Heraklion Municipal Art Gallery

Basilica of Saint Mark

Municipal Art Gallery

Basilica of Saint Markou

The Heraklion Municipal Art Gallery features outstanding samples of artistic expression by Greek and foreign artists that span over a large period of modern history and were inspired by the memories of Crete as a hub of 5 + 1 Civilizations.

The Heraklion Municipal Art Gallery is in possession of an important Collection of Works of Art which reveals the evolution of artistic creation in Crete from its very beginning to its most recent expressions. The founding of Heraklion Municipality paved the way for the creation of a core group of artworks which was subsequently enriched with donations by various artists, including renowned and distinguished artists such as Fanourakis, Markogiannakis, Tsarouchis, Vassiliou, Fassianos etc. At a later stage, the Heraklion Municipal Art Gallery purchased the painting “The Baptism of Christ” by the great Cretan painter Doménikos Theotokopoulos. After all, during the Cretan Renaissance, Heraklion was the birthplace of the famous Cretan School of Icon Painting, whose leading exponents were –among others– Doménikos Theotokopoulos and Michael Damaskenos.

These exceptional works of art are an integral part of the cultural heritage of Heraklion and deserve to be presented to the public and gain their rightful recognition and place in the artistic and intellectual culture of Crete. Driven by new technologies and the development of digital culture, we promote and make the best of this important collection in a disciplined and visionary fashion. To this end, in collaboration with the Foundation for Research and Technology – Hellas (FORTH), all works of the collection were digitised and we are currently developing an application for their presentation online at www.heraklionartgallery.gr.  Building on the work from the previous development stage and following further study, documentation, listing, archiving and categorization of the collection, we are also developing the appropriate social networks that will enhance the good practices of new knowledge and communication technologies, based on the essential multilingualism and interactivity of content through participatory internet applications. By doing so, we are aiming at adding the works of art of the collection to a broader global digital art repository and displaying them more efficiently and extensively. This effort is an integral part of Heraklion Municipality’s extrovert approach to culture and the desired outcome is this collection to become available internationally.

This page will also present all art exhibitions that take place at the Heraklion Municipal Art Gallery building / Basilica of St. Markou. The venue hosts several temporary exhibitions and they will be presented to the global online audience through newsletters and posts.

The social network profiles of the Heraklion Municipal Art Gallery constitute an appealing way of presenting the digital collection in an effort to attract more visitors and to stimulate public interest in the Art Gallery. Moreover, visitors from all over the globe are given the opportunity to browse through the collections and interact with the digital exhibits in an innovative way and in a multilingual environment.

Heraklion Municipal Art Gallery

Department of Culture of Heraklion Municipality

Deputy Mayoress: Rena Papadaki – Skalidi

Person in charge of the Art Collection and the Municipal Art Gallery: Marianna Gialiti


Enjoying a prominent spot opposite the Morosini fountain, right at the heart of the historical centre of Heraklion, the Metropolitan Church of Saint Mark of the Venetians currently houses the Municipal Art Gallery. One of the main concerns of the Venetians, as soon as they had established their rule on the island, was to build a church for their patron saint, Saint Mark.  The church, which was built opposite the Palazzo Ducale, was one of the most important buildings of Heraklion throughout the Venetian era and its impact on the social life of the city was undisputable. It was the place where rulers and officials solemnly assumed their duties and people sought the protection of the Saint. It also served as the final resting place of dukes and members of the Venetian nobility who were buried in sarcophagi elaborately carved in relief. At present, two of these tombs are visible on the east side of the church.

Currently, the imposing Basilica of Saint Markou hosts the Heraklion Municipal Art Gallery where temporary art exhibitions and various cultural activities take place.

Opening hours
Monday – Friday: 09:00 - 14:00 and 17:00 - 21:00
Saturday: 09:00 - 14:00
Sunday and public holidays: Closed
The exhibition venue of the Municipal Art Gallery of Heraklion is located in the Vasilica of Saint Markou (Lion Square, Heraklion)