The Hellenic Society for Aesthetics was established during the IV International Congress on Aesthetics held in Athens (1-6 September 1960). The pioneer and initiator of the Society was Panayotis A. Michelis (1903-1969), architect and theoretician of architecture and art with a particular interest in aesthetics. A professor at the School of Architecture at the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) and General Secretary of the Comité International d’Esthétique, Michelis served as the Society’s first President until his death in 1969.
From 1960 to date, the Hellenic Society for Aesthetics has been notably active in the field of aesthetics, and the foundation of the Society contributed substantially to the recognition of aesthetics as an academic field of study in Greece.
Besides Panayotis Michelis, the founding members of the Hellenic Society for Aesthetics were a team of distinguished Greek scholars, intellectuals and artists, amongst them, the painter Effie Michelis, wife of Panayotis Michelis, the poet Odysseas Elytis (who was later to be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature), the architect Nikolaos Moutsopoulos, the philosopher Evanghelos Moutsopoulos, the archaeologist Ioannis Papadimitriou, the novelist and art critic Angelos Terzakis, the architect Pavlos Mylonas, the poet and writer Takis Papatsonis, the art critic Alexandros Xydis, the painter Nikos Hadjikyriakos-Ghikas and others.
The aims and objectives of the Society as laid out in its statutes are the following: to promote study and research in the field of aesthetics; to engender interest among Greek intellectuals in aesthetic matters by publishing a journal, organising lectures and by using any other means that the Board of Directors deems advisable; to provide scholarships and awards to artists, students and graduates of Greek universities; to communicate with foreign societies of aesthetics through congresses, visits, newsletters etc.; and to establish a library specialising in aesthetics.
After P. A. Michelis’ death in 1969, the poet and academician Takis Papatsonis succeeded him as president. The philosopher and professor at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki Giorgos Mourelos (1912-1994) followed in 1977. Since 1981 President of the Society has been the architect Dionysis A. Zivas, professor emeritus of the NTUA.
Honorary Members of the Hellenic Society for Aesthetics, since 8.6.2017:
- Tereza Pentzopoulou-Valalas, founding member and past Vice-President of the Society, Professor Emerita (Philosophy) of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Corresponding Member of the Academy of Athens.
- Dr. Caterina Spetsieri-Beschi, founding member of the Society, visiting faculty in History of Art at the NTUA and at the Università del Salento, Lecce.
- Dimitri Z. Andriopoulos, Professor Emeritus (Philosophy) of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.
- Yannis Ioannidis, Composer and Conductor. Professor at the Institute of Culture and Fine Arts, Caracas, Founder and Conductor of its Chamber Orchestra, Professor at Caracas Conservatory, Director of the choir at Caracas University, Professor at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens.
- Evangelos Moutsopoulos, founding member of the Society, Professor Emeritus (Philosophy) and past Rector of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Member of the Academy of Athens.
- Nikolaos E. Moutsopoulos, founding member of the Society, Architect, Professor Emeritus of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Corresponding Member of the Academy of Athens.
- Dr. Linos G. Benakis, long term Member of the Board of Directors of the Society, Research Fellow of the Academy of Athens, Honorary Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Ioannina, past Director of the Centre for the Research of Greek Philosophy of the Academy of Athens.
- Dimitris A. Fatouros, founding member of the Society, Architect, Professor Emeritus and past Rector of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, past Minister of Education.