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Eleusis 2023, the visible and invisible history


The city of Elefsina introduces itself to the general public with the Exhibition Mystery 29_Eleusis at the Benaki Museum / 138 Pireos Str. An emblematic project that serves as a precursor to the programme of 2023 Eleusis European Capital of Culture, co-organized with the Benaki Museum, about the visible and invisible history of Elefsina.

A rare journey into the mysteries and uniqueness of a city—a timeless reference point for all of Greek history. Admission is free of charge.

Exploring the present and the past of the city, what is schematically called the “DNA”  or the collective Subconscious of the place, Mystery_29  Eleusis. Raw Museum, curated by architect-museologist Erato Koutsoudaki, attempts to interpret the city as an Exhibit, and invites the audience to a journey to the core of its existence; from antiquity to modern times, through tradition and domestic exile and internal migration, displacement, industrial growth, the long-suffering labor realities, the city’s relationship with the arts and Aeschylus, whose birthplace it is, the people and the communities that comprise it.

The design of the Exhibition Mystery_29  Eleusis. Raw Museum moves on three levels: the first one follows the logic of the cabinets of curiosities of the Italian Renaissance. By paying tribute to the Eleusinian collectors who preserve the evidence of its past with admirable perseverance, it hints at the origins of museum practice. Unique documents and exhibits, some of which belong to the collections of the Benaki Museum and are rarely or for the first time presented to the public, along with everyday objects of sentimental value become treasures to be discovered.

The second level, through a series of talking portraits, places important persons of the local society in the role of Exhibition guide, as well as others who have inextricably linked their lives with Elefsina.

The third level highlights anonymous recordings of views and moments of the city. Lithographs of 18th and 19th century travelers and historical images taken by important international photographers, converse with works by contemporary Greek photographers who capture aspects of the city, while earlier stories of the residents, through their personal photographic collections, fleetingly pass before us.

The records, however, also include words written about Elefsina by great thinkers, poets and writers of the global intelligentsia, conversing with exhibits and memories, highlighting contemporary and past mysteries of the city. Lastly, a plethora of actions will complement Mystery_29  Elefsina. Raw Museum, which will be announced soon.

With an eye on Elefsina’s role as European Capital of Culture for 2023, the core of the Exhibition is dominated by a gallery, a place for the city’s hidden and secret elements, its global and timeless influence.

Admission to Myster_29  Eleusis. Raw Museum is free of charge.

Exhibition curation: Erato Koutsoudaki

Duration: October 13 to November 27

Opening: October 11 at 20:00


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