Celebration of the Golden Juvilee of the 1st Molecular Biology Summer School in AKSS

In celebration of the 50 year anniversary of the first Molecular Biology summer school in AKSS, a special event took place, August 30 2016, under the auspices of the President of the Hellenic Republic, honoring the great scientist, noble laureate of Medicine &Physics, and philhellene, James Watson.

In the idyllic forest where the outdoor amphitheater is located, younger and older participants, students of the University of Patras and the Ηead of their delegation, Prof. John Matsoukas, scientists from abroad, political representatives of the Hellenic Republic and artists honored the 88year old Nobelist, who came back in the island and the School after 50 years.  The celebration was under the aegis of the President of the Hellenic Republic.

30-08-2016 Salutation Of The President Of Anargyreios And Korgialeneios School Of Spetses, Mr Fintikakis

“I am found here today on behalf of the Executive Committee of a FOUNDATION OF EDUCATION AND CULTURE, in my capacity as President of AKSS, in which distinguished members of the Greek Scientific Community and the school’s alumni take part.

Among the arts and science served by its alumni, I wish to put special emphasis on Architecture, which I represent internationally, and which was honored by the Xenakis brothers Iannis, Kosmas (architects) and Jason (philosopher). The Xenakis brothers developed innovative constructive methods by tying music and architecture with maths and physics, searching environment and nature for the “Ideal and fair Society” Plato speaks in his “REPUBLIC”, as you can see in the last slide.

I wish to stress the interconnection of shapes in BIOLOGY, ARCHITECTURE and ART, with the form of DNA, Frank Gerry’s Architecture and TATLIN’s sculpting, which is a monument of the “Second International” for a fairer human society.

I salute this event, whose goal is to revive AKSS as a FOUNDATION OF EDUCATION AND CULTURE. This event takes place here, in the environment of the pine forest of AKSS, which constitutes the synergy between content and shape- as foresaid- and contributes to the development of the Dialectic via conferences and events. AKSS should become a pivotal engine for this development and a pole of social cohesion for the citizens of Spetses, as well as a reference point for assembly, dialogue and education and important tourist-cultural center in synergy with the Greek and the International Community.

Only a few days ago I met with the Manager of the Library of Alexandria, on the occasion of my participation as a judge in the International Competition “Science City” at the Pyramids of EGYPT. We discussed the possibility of signing a co-operation Agreement on matters of EDUCATION and CULTURE.  Main instrument of success is the “Lob der Dialektik”, from the poem of Brecht “Wer zu Hause bleibt”, which was one of the creations inspiring the Xenakis brothers for “the development of the view of the active spectator” for the foundation and the society of Spetses. This is the best way to depict the vision of Eleftherios Venizelos, and of the great benefactor, Sotirios Anargyros”.

It was a moving night for J. Watson and all those who had the luck to be found there and meet him in person. He was only 25 years of age when he announced, together with F. Crick, the discovery of the double helix, perhaps the most important to Biology of our days. This was presented in 1966 at AKSS in the frame of the summer school of molecular biology, before exceptional representatives of the science.

Upon returning to the same classroom and the same venues that had hosted that special event, Prof. J. Watson elaborated on the importance of this discovery, on contemporary issues and trends of his science, as well as othe impact on his professional and personal life.

In the night of his celebration he was also nominated “Honorary Citizen of Spetses”, upon decision of the Municipality, in the presence of the Major, Mr Lirakis, while he was also welcomed by the President of AKSS, Architect Mr. Fintikakis, the Vice President and Representative of the Prefecture of Attica, Mr Chatziperos, the Minister of Internal Affairs, Mr Panagiotis Kouroumplis. Furthermore, the  Chemist Association fo Greece offered him a small sculpture of the double helix.

Moreover, among the special participants in the event were Ruth Padel, great great granddaughter of Darwin, Professor of Poetry and philhellene, who offered a very interesting presentation about the work of Darwin, and the importance of the observation of nature for understanding biology, Dr. Nickolas Moschonas, Professor of Biology and Medical Molecular Genetics, and of course Dr. John Matsoukas, Professor of Chemistry and co-organizer.

Furthermore, Mr. Stathis Leontis, renown sculptοr, shared his viewpoint on the evolution of species. The night closed with the music of Mimis Plessas, ATTIKA Orchestra and the Municipal Philharmonic of Peristeri.

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