- 1958-1980 (Creation)
Level of description
Extent and medium
1 box of 105 color photographic prints and 1 black and white photographic print
Name of creator
Edward Eliopoulos was born in 1914. He was a member of the Greek Resistance during the Second World War and fled southwest from the area of Githion, into Mani, the southernmost tip of the Peloponnese. This was his first encounter with the region. Eliopoulos, mostly based in Athens, began photographing the architectural monuments, landscape, and inhabitants of Mani in 1958. He would explore Mani almost every month of the year, spending a whole week each month searching for sites to photograph. His documentation and research culminated in a collaboration with historian Peter Greenhalgh to write a historical and practical guidebook entitled Deep Into Mani: Journey to the Southern Tip of Greece. The goal of the publication was to encourage visitors to witness the rich and varied cultural heritage of the area, much of which had undergone significant deterioration. Together, Eliopoulos and Greenhalgh traveled through Mani in the summer of 1980. Eliopoulos provided his photographs to illustrate the text written by Greenhalgh. They considered Mani to be the most fascinating region of the Peloponnese, possessing historical sites from various time periods under Spartan, Roman, Byzantine, Frankish, Venetian and Ottoman rule, which were relatively understudied.
Over the years, Eliopoulos produced over 5,000 images documenting the Mani region, and exhibited selections of his photographs at the University of London, the Archaeological Association of Athens, and the Institut d’Art et d’Archéologie at Paris-Sorbonne University. Eliopoulos inspired his niece, Dora Eliopoulou-Rogan, to write a book entitled Mani: History and Monuments, also illustrated with his photographs.
Eliopoulos later resided in Dionisos, Greece.
Immediate source of acquisition or transfer
One hundred and fourteen (114) black and white prints were acquired from Eliopoulos in 1970-1972 by Susan Boyd, former Assistant Curator of the Photograph Collection (now ICFA). However, a selection of the photographs were returned to Eliopoulos due to their poor print quality, leaving a physical count of ninety-three (93) black and white prints that were actually incorporated into the Black and White Mounted Photograph Collection (PH.BZ.001) and one (1) loose print in ICFA’s backlog. Some of the photographs were created on commission. In 1970, the Photograph Collection (now ICFA) at Dumbarton Oaks began its relationship with Eliopoulos by acquiring a selection of Eliopoulos’s black and white photographs that depicted Byzantine architecture and wall painting. Photograph Collection staff also commissioned Eliopoulos to comprehensively photograph particular monuments such as the Church of Hagios Stratigos in Boularioi and the Church of Episkopi. Advancement in printing technology led to a later donation of color photographs in 2004, which documented various Byzantine churches and were printed from Eliopoulos’s personal collection of large format color slides produced between 1958 and 1980.
In 2007, Eliopoulos sent an additional donation of photographs to Alice-Mary Talbot, Director of Byzantine Studies at the time. A binder filled with seventy-eight (78) color photographs was received on January 25, 2004; an additional twenty-seven (27) color photographs was received in March 2004. The lack of technology in the 1970s to produce good quality prints from large format color slides led to the thirty year delay of the acquisition of the color prints. A Deed of Gift for the 2004 donation was signed by Eliopoulos and Shelia Klos, Director of the Library (1999-2015).
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Allied materials area
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Related units of description
- Curator’s Office Files. Image Collections and Fieldwork Archives. Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Washington, D.C.
- Photographs of Mani, Greece by Slobodan Ćurčić, 35 mm slide collection. Image Collections and Fieldwork Archives. Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Washington, D.C.
- Photographs of Mani, Greece by Doula Mouriki and Dušan Tasić, Black and White Mounted Photograph Collection, PH.BZ.001. Image Collections and Fieldwork Archives. Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Washington, D.C.
Greenhalgh, Peter and Edward Eliopoulos. Deep into Mani: Journey to the Southern Tip of Greece. London: Faber and Faber, 1985.
Rogan, Dora Eliopoulou. Mani: History and Monuments. Athens: Lycabettus Press, 1973.
Subject access points
Name access points
- Eliopoulos, Edward (Creator)
Description control area
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- Drandakis, Nikolaos V. Byzantinai Toichografiai tis Mesa Manis. Athens, 1964.
- Fermor, Patrick Leigh. Mani: Travels in the Southern Peloponnese. London: John Murray, 1958.
- Megaw, Arthur. “Byzantine Architecture in Mani.” Annual of the British School at Athens 33 (1932-1933): 137-162.
- Traquair, Ramsay. “The Churches of Western Mani.” Annual of the British School at Athens 15 (1908-1909): 177-213.