Ancient Greek history, Goddess Inspired jewelry Susanna Galanis, Jewelry, Nike, Uncategorized

Nike “winged goddess of victory”



NIKE –  the ancient Greek winged goddess of victory, triumph, strentgh and speed.



Nike was the winged goddess of victory, triumph, strength and speed according to the ancient Greek myths and legends.  She was depicted as the spirit or the goddess who personified victory, both in battle and peaceful competition.

According to the mythological stories, she was a very close companion of the king of gods: Zeus. When Zeus was gathering his allies at the start of the Titan War, against the older deities, he requested the infernal river Stynx, Nike’s mother, to bring all of her children for his support. Stynx, who was the daughter of Okeanos  and had four children with the giant Pallas: Nike (Victory), Zelos (Rivalry), Kratos (Strength), and Bia (Force) was summoned to bring her children to the service of the God. Nike assumed the role of the divine charioteer (a role which she is often portrayed in classical Greek art). All four children were appointed as sentinels standing beside the throne of the god.

One of the most famous artistic representations of the goddess Nike is the statute featured above called Nike of Samothrace.  It was discovered on the Greek Island of Samothrace in 1863 and is now housed in the famous Louvre Museum in Paris. This magnificent work of art was probably erected by the Rhodians about 203 BC to commemorate a sea battle.

Nike was depicted in Greek art having a variety of attributes including a wreath to crown the victors, an oinochoe and a phiale (bowl and a cup) for libations, a thymiaterion (incense burner), an altar and a lyre for celebration of victory in song. In scenes from Giantomachia (war of the Giants) she appeared driving the chariot of Zeus. In mosaic art and in coins Nike was often holding a palm branch as a symbol of victory. She was frequently portrayed  hovering with outspread wings over the victor in a competition; for her function referred to success not only in war but in athletics and all other undertakings. Indeed, Nike was eventually to be recognized as a sort of mediator between gods and men. One of her weakness was that she wanted to win at all costs.

Nike was closely identified with the goddess Athena, the goddess of wisdom, war strategy, peaceful negotiations and the divine patron of warriors.

There were several temples in the Ancient Greek world to honor the goddess such as the temple of Nike at Samothrace, at the Acropolis in  Athens and at Ephesus. Worship of the goddess Nike included processions, libations or sacrifices that were performed to elicit her favor. Petitions in a form of prayers could be presented to the priestesses officiating in the temples who could communicate these to the goddess at the sacret oracles. If the answer was received from the goddess it was presented to the petitioner by the priestess.



SUSANNA GALANIS – Inspired by History Jewelry  Online                                                                             click right


Will be back with more gods and goddesses soon…


Classical Education, Fashion, Goddess Inspired jewelry Susanna Galanis, Greek goddess Nike, New York City, Susanna Galanis Jewelry

A post card – Nike NYC



It’s Saturday afternoon in New York City.


Susanna Galanis – Inspired by History

Jewelry Online Click Right



As I mentioned in my previous post, I will be writing more about my new favorite ancient Greek goddess, Nike (Victory). I am working on it… while its snowing outside. I must say, it’s a novelty. Normally, I do not like cold and darkness but, I am enjoying the snow! Who knows? I may start liking winters, and hopefully… not suffer as much. I miss the Summer already. I miss the golden sunshine. I miss the light! I miss the pool on the rooftop of my building and the gossiping with my neighbors about fashion and stuff…

Here is a post card about Nike, history and glamour – some of my favorite words!

Ancient Greek history, Classical Education, culture, Fashion, Goddess Inspired jewelry Susanna Galanis, Greek goddess Nike, Jewelry, New York City

Nike – Greek goddess of victory in NYC

NIKE ancient Greek goddess of Victory in all her glory!




Susanna Galanis – Inspired by History Jewelry

Online catalog – click image


It seems to me that the ancient Greek goddesses are all over New York City these days! Athena and Nike! I encountered them both…

First it was goddess Athena at the Metropolitan Museum’s facade, [she is eternally there, please visit] and then making a cameo appearance on the face of the most beautiful cameo I ever saw, at an estate art show, [please see my previous posts] and now its Goddess Nike [the goddess of Victory.] She is standing right at the heart of New York City. The center of the world I would say….

Her glorious and magnificent presence cannot be missed in the bold and beautiful golden gilded bronze statue at the northern half of Central Park’s Grand Army Plaza [at Fifth Avenue and 59th Street].  She is accompanying Union Army General William Tecumseh Sherman – a great American military hero of the civil war, which makes me wonder? did the ancient Greek goddesses help non-ancient Greeks as well? Apparently yes! Their divine existence is not only eternal, but universal! In this larger-than-life statute goddess Nike is accompanying general Tecumseh Sherman in a courageous lead into the battle of 1864 in which the Confederacy was successfully split in two effectively ending the Civil War. Amazing work Nike! … and thank you! Your presence and help is always welcome in New York City.

This major work of art by famous sculptor Saint-Gaudens (1848-1909 USA) ranks as one of the world’s finest equestrian monuments, winning the Grand Prix at the Paris Exposition in 1900.

I am so proud of my Greek Goddesses patronizing New York!  The next time you go for a walk to Central Park, or go shopping at Bergdorf’s  stop for a moment and admire the beauty called Nike!

I will be back soon with more details about glorious goddess Nike…..


Ancient Greek history, Classical Education, Fashion, Goddess Inspired jewelry Susanna Galanis, Greek Goddess Athena, Jewelry, Susanna Galanis Inspired by History

Goddess Athena reappears … at a jewelry Art show

GODDESS ATHENA reappears in NYC.


If you have been reading my posts, I am sure you read about the ancient Greek Goddess who inspired me on designing my spring ’12 jewelry collection, the majestic Goddess Athena. It started with my recent visit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the discovery of her divine existence at the museum’s facade. Well, this experience resulted in the birthing of the AGE OF GODS – Athena Collection, which I will introduce  to all very soon.

_______________________________________________  Online Catalog – click image


I was so thrilled today, to meet Goddess Athena again, and so soon after my recent encounter with her at the Met!  While visiting  an Estate Jewelry show featuring mostly magnificent “collector’s” pieces, I came across the most stunning cameo! The dealer said, ” I don’t really know if its Athena…I am debating…  it could be Artemis  or Minerva.”

“This is Athena for sure!” I replied. ” I know my Greek Goddesses! Without a doubt, this is the helmeted Goddess of war strategy wearing an olive wreath around her signature warrior helmet symbolizing peace and prosperity. And Minerva, is the Roman name of Athena [as we know, the Romans respectfully adopted the Greek culture including its Gods and Goddess.”]

What a beautiful vintage piece! I am still thinking of this magnificent treasure. I know it’s going to be mine eventually because I cannot stop thinking about it! I felt like it “spoke” to me, saying, how much it will enjoy the company of my other pieces! Beauty loves company. That is what I say!

I will be back soon with more glamour, history, gods and goddesses…and more.


accessories, Classical Education, Fashion, Jewelry, Susanna Galanis Inspired by History, Susanna Galanis Jewelry, Uncategorized

SUSANNA GALANIS Modern-day Goddess – profile



COLLECTION Susanna Galanis – Inspired by History 

This post is about the woman who inspires and honors me by possessing and wearing the jewelry I create for Her: my beautiful customer, muse and modern-day goddess.  This is about the woman who allows me to have the biggest pleasure – creating wearable art in jewelry inspired by Ancient Greece. She posses my jewelry, but what else does she possess? 











Online Catalog

click left





The Susanna Galanis “customer” is like a rare diamond: Brilliant and dazzling, precious, scarce, fine and glamorous,  multi-faceted and eternal.

She is beautiful, feminine and charming, sophisticated, intelligent  and deep.

She knows who she is, has a defined purpose and a clear vision.

She is strong and confident, yet, modest and demure.

She is artistic, cultural and worldly.

She was either tought to have high self-esteem, or, she is intelligent enough to have figure this out herself.

She is a “winner.”

She makes an “entrance” and she gets noticed – with no effort! She  lights up the room.

She is fulfilled and generous, genuine, spiritual and happy, and, she is happy to give back.

She is adored and treasured by both men and women being blessed with a magnetic personality and tons of charisma.

She is a “mature 20-something or a “young” 60, 70, or 80-something. She is timeless – like a Greek Goddess! She is memorable and she is, or, she becomes a legend. SHE MAKES HISTORY!

She is fun, has no “attitude,”  she is kind and compassionate – she has a certain “air of divinity.”

She is capable of achieving great success. She understands the meaning and the value of great achievement and its relation to her “purpose” in life and in her connection to the Creator.

She is an icon and a muse. She can relate easily to [my muses as well] Athena, Aphrodite, Nike, Olympias, Cleopatra, Helen of Troy, Liz Taylor, Melina Mercuri, Grace Kelly, Beyonce,  Angelina Jolie, latest sirens Blake Lively, and Anna Dello Russo.

She has a superb taste and seeks only the best – because she is worth it!

She LOVES one-of-a-kind designs and she possesses an “expert eye” for craftmanship, quality, rarity and history.

She has a “love affair” with fashion, especially jewelry.

She collects.

My ring [ a 33.19 Karat Asscher-cut white diamond, a gift from  Richard Burton] gives me the strongest feeling of beauty.” 

                                                                          Liz Taylor

We all can relate to the above statement!

I am very much looking forward to the Spring’ 12 Collection: AGE OF GODS – Athena which I will introduce very soon.

With much love and gratitude,                                                                Susanna Galanis

Classical Education, culture, Goddess Inspired jewelry Susanna Galanis, Jewelry, Susanna Galanis Inspired by History, Susanna Galanis Jewelry, Uncategorized

A Bhutan royal wedding and coronation

BHUTAN ROYAL WEDDING a modern-day fairy tale.




I told you that I was fascinated with kings and queens, castles and palaces, fortresses, royal ceremonies, coronations…etc. They are very rare in our modern times, but, they still exist.

On Thursday, Justsun Pema, a 21-year-old student became a Queen of Bhutan in an elaborate and festive Buddist marriage ceremony wearing a traditional wedding dress!

In a 17th century fortress, a lavish coronation took place where her groom King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck came down from his throne [how romantic] to meet her, wearing as part of his elaborate traditional wedding attire a distinctive royal yellow sash, and the red Raven Crown which symbolizes his role as the people’s protector.

His bride’s delicate and exotic beauty and her modest demeanour mark her out as the new crown jewel of this tiny Asian country nested between India and China.

After her arrival at the Palace of Great Happiness, and before the wedding, the would-be-Queen lit a golden lamp and offered prayers. During the ceremony prayers for the accumulation of spiritual and wordly virtues for the royal couple were chanted by the Buddist monks.

Best Wishes!!!

Colorful, festive images of the wedding ceremony below.

accessories, Ancient Greek history, Classical Education, Goddess Inspired jewelry Susanna Galanis, Greek Goddess Athena, Zeus

Ancient Greek goddess Athena – part II

Age of Gods – Athen

As I mentioned on my previous post, goddess Athena, was the patron divinity of wisdom, courage, inspiration, civilization, warfare, strength, strategy, arts, crafts, justice and skill.

Athena was also a shrewd companion and patron of heroes. She is the goddess of heroic endeavour.  The metal work of weapons also fell under her patronage. She led battles as the disciplined, strategic side of war. Although she was the goddess of war strategy, she disliked fighting without a purpose and prefered to use wisdom to settle predicaments. She only  encouraged  fighting for a reasonable cause, or to resolve conflict.         


Goddess – Inspired Jewelry


Next to God Zeus, the king of  ancient Greek Gods,   Athena was the second most important goddess in Ancient Greece. She was Zeus’s favorite daughter and she was the only one that he actually birthed himself – according to the myths. It is said that her mother was Metis,  the Titan goddess of wisdom and the original wife of Zeus.

Here is Athena’s interesting birth story: Zeus came to power by overthrowing his father Chronus. Cronuses’s mother, the great earth goddess Gaia, foretold a prophesy in which one of Cronuses’s children will eventually overthrow him and take control of both gods and men alike. Cronus decided that the solution to this problem was to devour each and every one of his children after they were born. Eventually, his wife, Rhea, couldn’t take it anymore and gave him a stone wrapped in a baby blanket, which he promptly swallowed – thus saving her last son, Zeus, from this terrible fate.

Eventually Zeus fulfilled the prophesy by overthrowing his father. He became king of gods and men and the days of the Titans rule were gone. Gaia had another prophesy once Zeus became an adult – she foretold that his wife, Metis, would give birth to a son who would overthrow Zeus the way he overthrew his father. Knowing this, Zeus devoured Metis while she was pregnant. His plan worked that he never had a son by Metis, but what Zeus didn’t realize was that his daughter by Metis [ the baby was a girl] was more strong-willed than he imagined.

After a bout of terrible headaches Zeus begged the blacksmith God Hephestus to split his head open to relieve the pressure. Out popped the goddess Athena, fully dressed in armor and ready to do battle – according to the myths and legends. Her father was the most powerful and her mother the wisest among the gods, so Athena was the combination o the two – power and wisdom harmoniously blended.

In contradiction with her brother Ares, the god of war, chaotic battle, blood lust, ferocity, courage and violence, Athena was the goddess of strategy, organized fighting, advanced weaponry and skilled manipulation on the battlefield. If Ares was offence, Athena was defence. If Ares represented pure force Athena represented controlled strength. It was her wisdom and strategic planning that often turned the side of the battle to the victor. Athena is usually shown with the Goddess Nike (Victory) at her side.

Images above and below. Giagantomachia (Battle of the Giants) marble relief sculpture frieze from the Great Altar of Zeus at Pergamont. 

Athena battles Alkyoneus  in the War of the Giants. The giant is winged with the serpentine legs. His mother Gaia, top image, rises up from the earth [Chronus had more children after Zeus split him open in his attempt to overthrow him, the rest of the children spilled out from his body] besides him. Athena is attended by the winged  goddess Nike. Hellenistic style200 BC.

Athena is mostly depicted armed holding an Argolic shield [featuring  the head of gorgon Medusa at its center] and a spear.  She is crowned with a crested golden helmet usually pushed back to reveal her elegant beauty. Her helmet is usually ornamented in the most beautiful manner with griffins, heads of rams, horses and sphinxes.  Her garment is usually the Spartan tunic without sleeves, and over it, she is wearing a snake-trimmed Aigis cloak wrapped around her breast and arm -adorned with the monstrous head of gorgon Medusa. Her general expression is of thoughtfulness and earnestness. Her whole figure is majestic, strong and slender and usually she is holding some of her favorite objects such as an olive tree branch [symbol of peace and prosperity] and an owl [symbol of clarity, vision and wisdom].

It is important to note that Athena was known as well for her role as a judge, diplomat and mediator. Her decisions were renown for their fairness and compassion. She was frequently called upon to settle disputes between gods and various mortals. The goddess of wisdom was known for her superb logic and intellect. Her decisions were usually  well-considered, highly ethical, and seldom motivated by self-interest.

More than any other of the ancient Greek gods and goddesses, Athena, remains an icon, a timeless symbol of civilization, useful knowledge, noble reasoning, logic and wisdom. She is such an inspiration to me as an artist and in creating  my new  Spring ’12 jewelry collection: Age of gods – Athena.

Coming soon Age of Gods ATHENA collection – Spring’12 by Susanna Galanis


Ancient Greek history, Classical Education, Goddess Inspired jewelry Susanna Galanis, Greek Goddess Athena, Metropolitan Museum Facade, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Parthenon, Susanna Galanis Jewelry, Uncategorized

Greek Goddess Athena at the Met in New York City

MY VISIT AT THE MET – The Age of Gods




When I am missing Greece so much, or when meeting friends, or when I am having the blues,  I always go to the Metropolitan Museum – the Greek and Roman Galleries to be more specific. Picture Audrey Hepburn in the movie Breakfast at Tiffany’s.  The Met is my “go to” place – I feel at home. It is one of my favorite places to be. Instant transformation into another era: The Age of Gods. Thank God I live in New York City blocks away. Talking about God, on my recent visit last Sunday, looking up, admiring the divinity of this magnificent building and the beautiful architecture, walking up the stairs, feeling mesmerized and full of anticipation I discovered … a Greek Goddess.


The magnificent Museum’s Beaux-Arts  Fifth Avenue (82nd Street) facade and Great Hall, designed by the architect and founding Museum Trustee Richard Morris Hunt, opened to the public in December 1902. The Evening Post reported that at last New York had a neoclassical palace of art, “one of the finest in the world, and the only public building in recent years which approaches the dignity and grandeur of the museums of the old world.” 

In 2006, the Museum’s facade received a face lift (had a little work done, which took 4 years and $12.2 million to complete) and all the structural elements were restored as near as possible to their original 1902 grace. I was amazed with the perfection! Looking up right front and center, at the very top arch of the main entrance was a beautiful Grecian helmeted face – the same figure was at the top of the identical entries on the left and right. Who is this beautiful figure I wondered? It must have some kind of significance — otherwise it wouldn’t be there gazing in such a prominent, peacefully superior manner at New York’s Fifth Avenue and the millions of people entering the Museum through the years. I was captivated! I asked around, did some research, and I discovered she is The Greek Goddess Athena.  No wonder I felt the Greek hospitality every time I was visiting. No wonder I felt I was going home. No wonder I was drawn back again and again…



The architect, Mr. Richard Morris Hunt, mentioned above was inspired by a copy of the original bronze statue of Athena which today can be seen at The Louvre Museum in Paris – the name of this statute is called Athena of Velletri. Several copies were made by the Romans and this one was found at the Villa of Velletri in Italy. It is a copy of the original Greek bronze possibly created in 430 BC by Kresilas.

Image left:   Athena of Velletri at the Louvre  – Roman marble copy around 100 AD





Ancient Greek Goddess Athena was the mythological goddess  of wisdom, but also the poetic symbol of reason and purity. Goddess Athena was very important to the Greeks, since they named her the Iliad’s goddess of fight, the warrior-defender, the protector of civilized life and the artisan [spinning, weaving, gold crafting] activities. More specifically, she was the goddess of civilization and the more disciplined side of war choosing to win wars with effective strategies and not blood lust and violence. Athena often appears to be helmeted and armed and with a shield bearing the Gorgon Medusa’s head. This armed warrior goddess appears in Greek mythology as the helper of many heroes, including Heracles, Jason and Odysseus. She had never a consort or a lover, and thus often was  known as Athena Parthenos (“Athena the Virgin”), hence her most famous temple, The Parthenon on the Acropolis in Athens.

Goddess Athena gave the name to the city of Athens. The patron deity of the city of Athens she was the creator of the olive tree and desire of peace. She was admired and worshiped all over Greece, but her timeless home has always been Athens.  According to  ancient Greek myths and legends, she won in the competition with the God Poseidon over the patronage of the city state of Athens. Poseidon hit the ground with his trident and running water came out, while Athena offered an olive tree as a symbol of peace and prosperity.


Creator of peace, justice, wisdom and  prosperity, guardian of cities, and protector of the arts these are the characteristics of Goddess Athena – this is what she is offering us here with her eternal presence at the top of the grand entrance of New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art. We are so blessed and honored with her divine presence and divine inspiration for attaining peace and prosperity ourselves. During these challenging times we can all be inspired  — and we are!

She is not Athena at the Parthenon,  but, Athena at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. We will take it.



Images below: Greek and Roman Galleries recently renovated at the Met.

accessories, Fashion, Goddess Inspired jewelry Susanna Galanis, Jewelry

Fashion trend signal: CHOKERS

Now that the fashion shows for Spring/Summer ’12 have ended, lets talk about jewelry – my favorite subject.


online store click photo left


CHOKERS are a must have addition to your jewelry box this autumn/winter 2011-12 fashion season.

They are an instant upgrade to any outfit – from day into evening and several of the ready-to-wear, and jewelry designers have shown them.

Here is the  version that I introduced in my current collection:


Alexander the Great, Classical Education, Couture, Fashion Shows Spring '12, Paris, Sping '12 fashion shows, Susanna Galanis Jewelry

Alexander Mc Queen COLLECTION Spring ’12 Women’s ready-to-wear PARIS

                                         ALEXANDER  MC QUEEN –  PARIS 

A “signature” and ambiguously pretty collection was shown in Paris recently at Alexander Mc Queen. Sarah Burton created a perfect collection capturing the essence of what the original creator, the late Alexande Mc Queen,  was all about-dramatic pieces of wearable art with a certain edge.

Dramatic wearable art [as fashion] perfect for the modern-day warrior goddesses.

Please take a look at my favorite pieces.  Sarah Burton indeed has made her mentor [Alexander]  very proud!


I hope you will agree with me – this is “museum quality” work of art!


                 NOTE: For goddess inspired jewelry please visit me online at:



I will be back with more soon…