|Basil P. Goulandris, was
not only a successful ship-owner, but also a sensitive and knowledgeable
art collector. Along with his wife Elise, they felt a great affinity
with the arts, sponsoring and supporting the visual arts, and counted
among their friends many artists, writers and distinguished intellectuals.
Basil P. Goulandris was born in 1913 on the Cycladic island of
Andros. Upon completion of his studies in Greece, he pursued postgraduate
studies in Law in Switzerland. In 1950 he took over the management
of the family shipping companies based in New York. For many years
he held the position of Honorary Chairman of the Association of
Greek Ship Owners and was also a member of the Board of Directors
of the American Bureau of Shipping.
His passion for the arts led him to become an outstanding art collector.
He was an active Friend of numerous museums and foundations in the
United States and later in Europe, particularly in France. There
he was in close contact with business and artistic circles thus
forwarding the development of cultural links and exchanges between
Greece and France. In recognition of his contribution to that he
was awarded the highest distinctions of the French Republic. In
1981 he was appointed the title of “Knight of the Legion of Honour”
(“Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur”) and in 1986 of “Officer
of the Legion of Honour” (“Officier de la Légion d’Honneur”).
In 1983 he was once again honoured by the French Ministry of Culture
with the distinction of “Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters”
(“Commandeur de l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres”).
Elise B. Goulandris
In Greece he was conferred the “Cross of Commanders of the Battalion
of George I” in 1956, the Silver Medal of the Academy of Athens
in 1981 and the distinction of the “High Dignitary of the Ecumenical
Patriarchate”, in 1992.
Basil P. Goulandris passed away on the 27th of April 1994, in Athens,
Elise B. Goulandris, nee Karadontis, was born in 1917 in Athens, Greece.
After graduating from high school in Athens she went to study in New
York. There, in 1950, she met and married the ship owner Basil P.
She developed multiple activities within the Greek
communities in New York as well as in Lausanne and Paris, where
the couple settled for several years. With their art collection
they developed a remarkable cultural activity in Paris, especially
regarding the field of museums and the visual arts. In recognition
of her contribution to art, as well as to the Franco-Hellenic friendship,
the French government awarded her the highest distinction of the
“Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters” (“Commandeur de l’ordre
des Arts et des Lettres”). In 1981 the Academy of Athens awarded
her the Silver Medal for her “Patriotism and Love of Beauty” (“Filopatria
Elise B. Goulandris passed away on the 25th of July 2000, in Athens,