People visit the multimedia exhibition "Van Gogh Alive" at Megaron Concert Hall in Athens, Greece, on Nov. 21, 2017. (Xinhua/Marios Lolos)
by Maria Spiliopoulou
ATHENS, Nov. 22 (Xinhua) -- An unprecedented multimedia exhibition which has been travelling the world in recent years has arrived here, giving Greeks the chance to immerse themselves in Vincent Van Gogh's world, and leave behind the gloom of the seven-year Greek debt crisis.
"Van Gogh Alive" is not an ordinary art exhibition, but a "multi-sensory experience," visitors and organizers told Xinhua at Megaron Concert Hall, which is hosting the event from Nov. 7, 2017 to March 5, 2018.
The Greek capital is the 36th city in the world to welcome the exhibition. Visitors can forget about tiptoeing through silent museum galleries. Instead, they are free to dance to the music or touch the floors or the walls that Van Gogh's masterpieces are projected onto.
More than 3,000 paintings, sketches and animated images of the great 19th century Dutch artist are projected onto 40 giant screens on ceilings and floors using an advanced media platform of multi-sensory technology developed by Australian company SENSORY4.
The multi-channel, high resolution projectors and high-fidelity sound create a three-dimensional display that provides for an interactive way for visitors to see Van Gogh's life and work from new angles, surrounded by his vibrant colors, music and light.
"The use of music is very good. They have achieved what Van Gogh was seeking -- to combine (his work) with music to bring people tranquility," visitor Maria Douka said.
Katerina, 4, who was visiting the exhibition with her mother and two-month-old brother, was excited by the colors, in particular Van Gogh's yellow, she told Xinhua.
"I have created a puzzle with Van Gogh's room," she said.
Organizers hope that using 21st century technology to make great 19th century art come to life will attract more audience, in particular, the youth.
Many school groups from all over Greece have been queuing at Megaron this November to enter the exhibition.
"The number of visitors is great. Within the first 10 days, more than 20,000 people visited the exhibition. The reactions have been excellent," said Yannis Moustakas, assistant managing director of Lavris, the Greek company organizing the event.
"Unfortunately, the financial crisis has not helped in the production of many new projects in art. Nevertheless, every day there are remarkable works coming to light. I think that art is the best way to leave behind the pressure and the grief caused by the crisis," he added.