The Ilias Lalaounis Jewelry Museum (ILJM) is the only jewelry museum in Greece. Its cultural and educational mission is devoted to the promotion of ancient and contemporary silver and goldsmithery, studio jewelry and the traditional decorative arts. The Museum strives to act as an international center for the continuation of traditional crafts, especially the ancient art of silver and goldsmithery.
The ILJM opened its doors to the public in 1994. The impetus behind the formation of the ILJM was the need to house and display over 4,500 original designs of jewelry and microsculpture created by Greek designer, academician and entrepreneur Ilias Lalaounis (1920-2013) in a contemporary establishment. The visitor’s experience is a live educational demonstration of the history of art, with audiovisual material and hands on experience. The Museum houses the founder’s extensive archive, which dates from 1940 and encompasses models, drawings, photo archives, and old goldsmithery tools and machinery. The research library is the richest in Greece with jewelry publications; it includes art publications, periodicals, auction catalogues, and art history publications.
Lectures, seminars, workshops for children and adults, specially designed guided tours, programs for disabled individuals and activities for underprivileged youth are an inextricable part of the ILJM’s agenda. Cultural events have been organized and carried out to introduce the public to the wonders of archaeology, art history and the essence of the decorative arts.
In-house exhibitions focus on international museum jewelry and decorative arts collections such as Argentinian silver, Murano Glass, French Boxes of the 19th c., Pocket Watches from the 16th century until today, Scandinavian contemporary jewelry; private collections such as Ethnic jewelry from North Africa and Asia, American Costume jewelry, Rare Lighters, Greek Traditional Bullet Cases and many more unique works of art. Works from the Museum’s storage form important retrospective traveling exhibitions at such musuems as Pushkin Museum, Onassis Foundation New York, and National Museum of Art of Romania. Individual works from the permanent collections travel often to international museum exhibitions. The ILJM curatorial department also designs new exhibitions of decorative arts to be presented in Athens with the option to travel internationally such as Highlights: Haute Couture and Historic Jewelry.
Kallisperi 12 & Karyatidon St,
11742 Athens, Greece
Phone: +30 210-9221044
Find out more about ILJM's Ioanna Lalaounis by reading their 2016 interview on AJF.