Benaki Museum show keeps Nelly’s traces alive

Elli Sougioultzoglou-Seraidari is seen in a photograph from the 1990s. 'She was small and smiling,' remembers Maria Karavia of her first meeting with the photographer in 1975.

Elli Sougioultzoglou-Seraidari, the renowned interwar photographer Nelly's who captured highlights of the Greek capital like few others, lived two lives and the second began with a piece in Kathimerini nearly 50 years ago. It was titled "Classifieds" and spoke about "looking for traces of the renowned photographer Nelly's." It was written by Rena Angouridou in "Notebook," a daily column in Kathimerini, which she wrote along with Maria Karavia and Eleni Bistika.

"She called the newspaper straight away and I happened to answer the phone myself," Karavia recalls. "She had a soft voice, almost childlike, and said, 'This is Nelly.'"

It was the winter of 1975 and Sougioultzoglou-Seraidari - who was born in Asia Minor, studied in Germany and was a defining force on the Greek photography scene - was living at her ancestral home in the Athens suburb of Nea Smyrni with her...

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