Heroes of the 1821 War of Independence at the National Gallery

A portrait of Theodoros Kolokotronis, hero of the 1821 War of Independence, by Bavarian captain and artist Karl Krazeisen. [National Gallery]

The work of Karl Krazeisen (1794-1878), a Bavarian captain and self-taught artist who spent time in Greece in 1826 and is responsible for capturing images of the pantheon of 1821 War of Independence heroes, is the subject of a timely exhibition at the National Gallery.

He managed to capture Georgios Karaiskakis, Theodoros Kolokotronis and Yiannis Makriyiannis, whose portraits have for decades featured in school textbooks. Athanassios Diakos, Markos Botsaris and Papaflessas are missing from the collection because they had died by the time Krazeisen arrived.

A second exhibition at the same venue features 20 engravings by Zacharias Arvanitis, a student of Yannis Moralis and Dimitris Mytaras, representing an equal number of large-scale portraits of 1821 heroes.

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