Elefsina, Eleusis or ΕΛΕVΣIS. These are variants of the write of the same Greek city, which in 2023 we will also remember as the European Capital of Culture. The word ΕΛΕVΣIS in ancient Greek foreshadows the arrival of someone or something significant. One of the most important Greek playwrights, Aeschylus, announced himself in the 6th century BC, and in 2023 we can expect countless art shows, concerts, exhibitions, performances and other cultural projects that will flood the entire city and the surrounding region.
Elefsina is a port city, located about 20 km from Athens. But if we want to associate azure beaches and parasols in mixed drinks, we would probably be disappointed. Most Greeks allegedly view the city as a bather, suffering from a polluted environment, a tax paid by the entire coast of Attica for the large concentration of industry that has been concentrated in the area in the past. The high level of industrialization is in painful contrast to the cultural richness that the city has kept as its ageless secret since antiquity.
However, Elefsina is now not afraid to share its secrets with the rest of Europe or the world. However, the ancient myth and the unique ethos of the city as such would not be enough for the ECoC title. Each of the named cities is obliged to present a comprehensive vision of the artistic programme and strategic cultural development for the coming years. Elefsina was processing its application at a time when Greece was going through an economic crisis and many other countries were also struggling with growing Euroscepticism. The ECoC title is more than a prestigious crown. It's about opportunities, the ability to see new possibilities, about finding and finding together, connecting and much more. Elefsina was well aware of the potential of the ECoC and skillfully worked with it. In the competition for a cultural metropolis, she thus recognized an opportunity to withstand the economic crisis with a comprehensive vision of a new model of development with a focus on cultural benefits. Such a development model will be sustainable and environmentally friendly.