November 13, 2017:
We were all about that kitsch.
Elitist aesthetic, where certain works that are awful are "so bad they're good". Walter Keene's big-eyed-beans aren't kitsch, they're just mediocre. A 3-D postcard of Jesus blessing a line of trucks is kitsch.
For one thing, you have the sense that the artist knows the difference, and is having a laugh at the expense of consumers who might take the work seriously.
So that we repatriated with bad statuettes of the Parthenon, or cheapass copies of the Mask of Agamemnon, or 3-D postcards of Jesus blessing the harbor at Nafplio.
This time I return with a well-done copy of the Boxing Children fresco from Akrotiri which now hangs in a stairway at home. A small blue-and-white wool rug, the Greek colors. Books for gifts, and a 2018 calendar of ancient Greek sites which is lovely. Carried in an excellent canvas bag purchased in the Plaka from a vendor whose family, like every other shop in the Plaka, has a workshop in the basement. Regardless of the truth or falsity of the stereotyped claim, the bag is very tough, very high quality, and super easy to carry. I use it on the plane home to hold the rest of my swag.
I do still have those old postcards.