The landscaping of Dimitris Pikionis (Philopappou)

D. Pikionis (1887-1968) was an inspired architect, city planner, artist, scenographer and philoshopher. Together with his students he executed the most important architectural landscape project in modern Athens between May 1954 and Febrauary 1958. The project involved the archaiological site around the Acropolis and Philopappos Hill. The work included the creation of two spiral pedestrian walkways ending in two loops. The first approaches the archaeological site of Acropolis and the other leads away from it towards Philopappos hill, terminating at an open area called Andiro (Belvedere), which overlooks the Acropolis.

 The structure of Pikionis’s pedestrian walkways, which utilize paving blocks, reused marble elements from neoclassical buildings, as well as byzantine and popular motifs, is original.

The landscaping around the Acropolis was executed with absolute respect for the historical landscape and ancient topography. The work is organized into five main architectural “themes”: the beginning and end of the ascent to the Acropolis, and the beginning, middle and end of the walk on Philopappos Hill.

 One of his particularly important architectural projects was the restoration of Saint Demetrius Loumbardiaris church, complete with open spaces and Kylikeion. In addition with his architectural creations, Pikionis stressed the appropriate planting of the area with small plants and bushes from Attica.

 The treatment of stoned-paved walkways, the road network, paths, and sidewalks around the two theaters (Herodus Atticus, Theatre of Dionyso) encompasses an area of about 80,000 sm.

 Pikionis’s internationaly regognised and award-winning project, in its time called “a creation of highly aesthetic characer”, was declared a protected historical monument and work of art by the Ministry of Culture in 1996.

 

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