The Fund of Archaeological Proceeds participates at the international conference on public archaeology in Sicily: "Public Archaeology in Times of Crisis" VII Giornate Gregoriane (29-30 November 2013)

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Communicating archaeology through cultural products

Greek public museum shops in times of crisis



Ariadne Fioretou - Niki Archontaki

Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports, Fund of Archaeological Proceeds, Athens, Greece


A very important part of Greek museums are their museum shops, which have the potential to play an important role as a communicator/mediator between archaeology and the public. Visitors to museums and archeological sites can obtain an artifact that will remind them of the site or a museum masterpiece, something from which they will learn about history and archaeology, and which will accompany them home. In the museum shop the visit experience is fulfilled.

In Greece, the Ministry of Culture and Sports is in charge of the museum shops at the public museums and more specifically, the Fund of Archaeological Proceeds, a service of the Ministry with various departments. The Office for the Promotion of Cultural Goods is responsible for the selection of the products, the design and production stage, and the promotion of   finalized objects to the museum shops and the public. Furthermore, publications are prepared by the service’s Publications Department.

Greek public museum shops offer three categories of products: faithful copies, applications of inspired designs, and books.

Faithful copies consist of detached frescoes, coins, icons, jewelry, ceramic vases, etc. These are mastered either in molds prepared by making a cast of the original art piece, or by copying it. Such copies are provided with a certificate of authenticity and a card containing historical and archaeological information about the item.

A wide range of applications of inspired designs and educational material is available. Themes may refer to archaeological sites and their monuments as well as artifacts from temporary and permanent exhibitions; all inspired by Prehistoric, Archaic, Classical, or Byzantine motifs.

All museum shops also provide a book section containing archaeological guide books, exhibition catalogues, and more scientific publications.

Given the current crisis the cultural sphere is facing, it is important to attract the interest of the whole society. Greece is a country with a long and glorious history, though unfortunately it is experiencing a severe financial crisis. Cultural products could be a highly effective tool to engage and sensitize the public concerning culture and archaeology. At the same time, such efforts are repaid, since an appropriate and well-organized program could help confront both the cultural and economic crises.

We are working to communicate archaeology to the public through cultural products.


Conference Program