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AΕSCHYLIA 2023 – special edition

When there is a vision, there are no “peripheral” cities

The Aeschylia Festival is a womb. It is from this fertile womb that I believe the achievement called 2023 ELEUSIS European Capital of Culture originates.

About 44 years ago, in what was a dystopian landscape at the time, some enlightened inhabitants of this historic city felt the compelling need for culture and aesthetic consolation in the homeland of the great ancient poet Aeschylus, demonstrating something unique and promising as a possibility in terms of cultural theory and policy: when there is a vision, there are no “peripheral” cities. Every city, regardless of size, can become a centre of culture, offering works of art that become exclusive because of their uniqueness. In other words, the public should be able to encounter or enjoy the work of art just by being physically present here.

It was this ingenious gesture that generated the Aeschylia Festival and established it as an institution in the minds of the public and the art people all over the country: the fact that the Festival, beyond featuring works already available in the art market (a common and easy practice for festivals throughout the country both past and present, which are rightly considered peripheral), promoted original commissions to distinguished creators, mostly visual artists, something that over the years created a tradition and a reputation of exclusivity and uniqueness in the artistic landscape of Greece. 

Outstanding artists brought exceptional site-specific works, taking the opportunity to highlight the dynamic of this troubled city as an understated treasure which inspired them as well as offering their own gifts to Elefsina and its public! Gifts that were created as artworks after the artists’ thorough immersion in the city’s inexhaustible secrets.

In this way, with patience, gradually and consistently, a place becomes a centre of culture!

This is exactly the model chosen for the design of the programme for the Capital of Culture. Original works inspired by the city and its rich archaeological, industrial and humanist narrative; unique creations, some with the potential of permanence in the city as a legacy for the future.

In this context, honouring the institution of the Aeschylia Festival at this unique juncture of the European Capital of Culture, we present you the fruits of our close cooperation with the Aeschylia Festival in the heart of a year that is so important for Greek culture and Elefsina, in the form of what could be described as a special edition.


AΕSCHYLIA 2023 – special edition

Works from almost all categories of art, works that often escape from the familiar confines of the always wonderful Old Oil Mill Factory and spread to the city, the sea, the coastal front, at long last celebrating it in its entirety. Works that await to thrill and surprise you.



A text by Yannis Politakis, born in Elefsina, amateur beekeeper, accountant, seal maker, former sailor and employee of the Old Oil Factory of Elefsina
Through the eyes of Thanasis Leventis

An exhibition about the “Educational and Cultural Association of Elefsina”
“The Mirror -Karoptron- a symbol of sophistication to complete the universe” – Proclus

Tragedy was born because the skies were empty
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