This exhibition traces the process of the changing concept of water among urban residents from an unquestionable resource that cannot be bought or sold to a common consumer good in the flow of privatization that has spread across the world in the past twenty years of neoliberalism. 

The exhibition centers on an archive of materials showing the efforts of Greece's capital city of Athens—where almost all public goods have been privatized since the economic crisis—to protect the public ownership of water. From campaign videos and television ads against the privatization of water to protest posters and petitions, the archive documents the intense struggle that led in part to the prohibition of the privatization of water in the country’s Constitution.

Alongside the Greek archive, pickets and banners from water privatization protests in the US, Ireland, Bolivia, and India, among other places, will be exhibited. The exhibition also chronicles events and incidents related to the privatization of water that occurred in Korea from the 1990s to recent years and the enactment and amendment of relevant laws.

In line with these global water chronicles, the exhibition also introduces a part of the Book of the Dead from the collection of the Library of Alexandria in Egypt. By presenting the four oaths related to water that the souls of the dead must pledge upon their judgment in order to advance to the afterlife contained in the funerary text, we are able to learn from the ancients’ reverence for water and the sacred position it occupied.







Sept. 2

2:00pm - 4:00pm

Drinking Water Chronicles

"Water privatization looms under the pressure of prolonged economic crisis & austerity in Greece"

Eftihia Nestorides

(EYDAP Athens Water Company)