The Shells & the Sea permanent Exhibition is housed int the classical architectural styled building of Poros Municipal Library donated by Alekos and Katina Hatzopoulos, citizens of Poros. The two-story neoclassical-style former residence is framed by a small garden and sits at the top of a flight of steps leading up from the quay near the foot of the Clock Tower.
The main topic of the exhibition is the Shell and its relationship to those in prehistoric times and the fossilized ones of the Paleontology era (with exhibited items), the shells in ancient times and those in the present day environment.
The collection’s value
Over the period of time Helga Kanellakis with the help of her husband, George, executed a series of sea-diving and depth observations in the Troezenia area, including the coasts around the island of Poros.
Their love for the sea, led to this impressive shell collection taken from various sea – beds. Due to Ms Kanellakis’ desire to protect the ecosystem no live shells were removed from the depths.
The collection’s appreciation
This was carried out by Eve Vardala – Theodorou, Ph.D. in Marine Biology and head of the Natural History section in the Goulandris Museum of Athens.
The Shell Collection was donated to the Municipality of Poros in the summer of 2006 by George and Helga Kanellakis in memory of their beloved son, Alexandros. Sponsorship and the completed presentation of the collection were undertaken by Athens University.
George and Helga Kanellakis have not only graced Poros with such a wonderful collection but have also shown themselves as generous financial backers for the whole project. Their legacy is an example to all and stands as a reminder of our responsibility to present a clean and healthy environment to future generations.
The Scientific Elaboration and Presentation, was effected by Athens University (Geology and Paleontology section) under the responsibility of George Theodorou, Deputy Professor of Athens University.
The scientific parts of the collection are divided into the following categories:
- Geological data:
This section provides information about the Earth’s crust formation especially in the regions where Hellenism flourished and also includes prehistoric fossils. It was done by George Theodorou, Deputy Professor of Athens University.
- Volcanic data:
This is shown through pictures of the rock formation along the Aegean Volcanic Arc of which Poros is a part. This section was supervised by Konstantinos Kyriakopoulos, a member of the exhibition’s scientific team and also Deputy Professor of Athens University.
- Archeological data:
This part shows ancient artifacts such as earthen pots. They underline the Greek hydro – biological wealth of the Greeks during ancient times. Maria Gionis Ph.D. in Archeology, also a member of the exhibition’s scientific team, provided the necessary work.
- Hydro biological data:
More information on this aspect is supplied by the shells from sea and fresh water sources thanks to George and Helga Kanellakis. Thanks should also be extended to Eve Vardala- Theodorou, Ph.D. in Marine Biology.
The enrichment of the Exhibition
Large colorful photographs of photographs of scientific material were kindly supplied by the research diver and physician, Carl Vratitz from his valuable and unique underwater photo collection.
The uniqueness of the Exhibition
Since there are no shell exhibitions in the whole province of Troezenia, it is a particular honour for Poros island to be the recipient of such a precious acquisition of shells and the attendant scientific information.