Documentary photographer Effy Alexakis and historian Leonard Janiszewski decided to explore Australia’s Greek cafés and organized a unique touring photographic exhibition.
“Selling an American dream – Australia’s Greek café” explores an important chapter in the development of Australian culture and focuses on the cafés and milk bars established in Australia by Greeks who migrated in the country starting a nationwide phenomenon.
“Every time you drink a Coke, enjoy a milk shake, ice-cream or milk chocolate treat, go to the cinema, or listen to the latest popular music hit, you can thank Australia’s Greek settlers,” note the curators.
Prior to the explosion of American fast-food franchises, Greek cafés contributed to a major change in Australian eating habits. While a traditional mixed grill remained a favorite, Greek cafés were known for their introduction of American sodas, ice-cream sundaes, milkshakes, hamburgers, milk chocolate and hard sugar candies into communities right across Australia.
The exhibition will begin its journey at the Redciffe Museum on Queensland, Australian on September 3, and will continue to be on display for three months until November 29.
Curators Effy Alexakis and Leonard Janiszewski have cleverly utilized a revealing interplay of historical and contemporary photographs, married to extended oral history captions, and overlaid by a dramatic multimedia presentation created by film-maker Michael Karris, to present a social history exhibition that has powerfully resonated with audiences across the country.