Rhodes Black & White Photograph

A new exhibition in Rhodes captures the early days of the modern Greek state through the eyes of the island’s tourists

Rhodes is one of the most popular destinations in Greece and millions of tourists flood from around the world every year for a taste of the Mediterranean sun and the endless shoreline of golden beaches. What they come to realize is that Rhodes has also a rich history that makes the Island of the Sun the perfect blend of traditional and cosmopolitan. A new exhibition in Rhodes captures exactly that; the formation of the Greek state through the lens of Rhodes’ travelers!

The exhibition called “The early days of the modern Greek state through the eyes of travelers on the island of Rhodes” will be open to visitors from March 1st to December 31st of this year and is co-organized by the South Aegean Region, the General Secretariat of Aegean and Island Policy and the Museum of Modern Greek Art.

Rhodes Black & White Old Photography
A panoramic view of Rhodes’ Old Town from the Naillac Tower, before its destruction. The historic photograph was taken by the Englishman Francis Bedford on May 15, 1862.

The purpose of this particular cultural action is to preserve and promote the local cultural heritage. The exhibition also aims to contribute to the promotion of cultural tourism, which is part of the broader context of sustainable tourism development of Rhodes, with respect for the environment and the carrying capacity of both the Cyclades and the Dodecanese Greek islands.

Rhodes Black & White Old Photographs

The main goal of the event is the utilization of the cultural heritage, the promotion of the presence of the Dodecanese in the creation of the Modern Greek State and the creation of a digital platform with archival and educational orientation. It is noted that, among other things, in the field of culture, arts and monuments, many travelers expressed their admiration for Greek culture. By touring various parts of Greece, foreign travelers recorded in various artistic ways their experiences and impressions about the monuments, nature, customs and traditions of the locals.

Rhodes Black & White Old PhotographIn post-war Greece, tourism was seen as the quickest way to achieve economic growth, raise the morale of the Greeks, westernize society and introduce new lifestyle models. Rhodes was one of the few destinations where all the ingredients necessary to achieve this were already in place. Bright sun, perfect climate, long beaches and fascinating antiquities, in fact all the main elements of Greece’s “identity” are featured here, along with stunningly exotic architecture dating to the time of the Knights and the periods of Ottoman and Italian rule. Rhodes was and still remains to this day an undoubtable pioneer in tourism. You can read more about this here!

Exhibition: “The early days of the modern Greek state through the eyes of travelers on the island of Rhodes”, Rhodes’ Museum of Modern Greek Art, March 1st – December 31st, 2022.

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