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Picasso and Greek Antiquity in Crete - Exhibition at the Eleutherna Museum

Cretan Diet Festival

A new exhibition called "Picasso in Crete: The Joy of Life" will open on July 5th at the Museum of Ancient Eleutherna.

It features works by the famous 20th century artist Pablo Picasso, focusing on creatures from Greek mythology that he depicted, like the Minotaur, bulls, Pan, and fauns.

Picasso's artworks will be displayed alongside antiquities from the Eleutherna Museum.

The aim is to show how Picasso drew inspiration from Greek myths and antiquity as a source of creativity connecting great art across millennia.

Picasso in Crete
Picasso in Crete

This exhibition is an initiative by Professor Nikos Stambolidis from the Acropolis Museum, in collaboration with Paloma Picasso, the artist's daughter and designer.

She administers the Picasso Foundation in Paris and has visited the Eleutherna Museum before.

The exhibition includes 62 works by Picasso such as ceramics, drawings, and prints he created over many years depicting the Minotaur.

It also features 24 artifacts from the Eleutherna Museum's collection.

A highlight will be a loaned ancient Roman marble sculpture of the Minotaur from the 1st century AD, based on a 5th century BC Greek original.

This powerful work captures Picasso's own vision of the mythical creature, which first appeared in his art in 1928.

Picasso in Crete

Other exhibits include 11 bull drawings displayed with an ancient ceramic bull from Eleutherna, 18 small ceramic tiles with fauns and Pans celebrating "the joy of life," six large plates depicting the Minotaur and bulls, and a portrait of Claude Picasso.

The artworks are arranged into eight themes exploring Picasso's interest in ancient Greek myths, especially from Crete, a subject not deeply studied before.

Picasso in Crete

Celebration of Ancient Eleutherna Museum's 8th Birthday


Honored guests included the  President of Greece Katerina Sakellaropoulou, who paid respect to this sacred space.
The 8th anniversary of the Museum of Ancient Eleutherna,  Professor Nikos Stambolidis was celebrated in grand style.

Joining the festivities were high-profile guests such as the President of Greece Katerina Sakellaropoulou,  Queen Sophia of Spain, and  Princesses Irene and  Olimpia Torlonia.

The events began with the opening of an exhibition showcasing 62 works by Pablo Picasso from the personal collection of his daughter Paloma.

During the "The Joy of Life" Picasso exhibition, the Deputy Mayor of Culture,  Manos Tsakonas, met with  Mrs. Paloma Picasso, signing the exhibition book and gifting her a piece of jewelry from the National Gallery's shop.


The celebrations concluded with a spellbinding concert by the legendary Greek singer George Dalaras, whose soulful voice transported audiences to distant yet familiar places.

After her official events, the President stayed in Rethymno for two more days to relax and experience the city at a leisurely pace.

On Sunday morning, she walked through the historic center of Rethymno. The President visited the Rethymno Town Hall, where she was welcomed by Mayor Giorgis Marinakis.

The Mayor gave her a tour of the city hall.

Her visit highlighted Rethymno as an attractive destination, blending world-class art, music, history, and warm hospitality during this cultural weekend celebrating the museum's milestone.


The exhibition runs until October 20th.

more Museum of ancient Eleutherna

City of Rethymno

You are invited to travel to areas, which are perhaps still unknown to the majority, and which are sometimes remote, but always magical and magnificent throughout the seasons. We recommend our visitors to see our picturesque villages through the eyes of the soul, try the Cretan cuisine, our wine and “tsikoudia”, participate in our revelries and festivities, but most importantly get to know our soul, our hospitality, the safe, untouched interior of the region, the other Rethymno.
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Department of Tourism
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  +30 28310 21459
  +30 28310 21459
  21 El. Venizelou Str, 74100, Rethymno, Crete, Greece

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