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The international project “The Ship of Tolerance” in Thessaloniki

May 16, 2023

A big wooden ship, modeled after an ancient Egyptian sailing vessel, is taking shape in the Port of Thessaloniki. Its destination: a place of greater tolerance and understanding between people, inspired by the voices of children and the power of art.

As it travels the world, the Ship of Tolerance seeks to connect kids across cultures and continents using the universal language of art. First constructed in Egypt in 2005, it’s since been recreated more than a dozen times across four continents, in Venice, Havana, Chicago, and beyond.

In Greece, more than 350 students ages 5 though 18 have created paintings expressing what tolerance means to them in workshops guided by the project leaders, and 160 of these paintings will be sewn together into a sail for the ship. The ship itself is being constructed by a group of carpenters from Manchester, England.

At the same time, the MOMus-Experimental Center for the Arts in Thessaloniki is hosting an exhibition on the history of the Ship, featuring sails created in other locations.

This iteration of the Ship of Tolerance project is made possible through a collaboration between the New York-based Ilya and Emilia Kabakov Foundation, MOMus-Experimental Center for the Arts, and Donopoulos International Fine Arts.


Pier A’, Port of Thessaloniki
Opening on 17 May 2023
Free access

Ilya and Emilia Kabakov Foundation
MOMus-Experimental Center for the Arts
Donopoulos International Fine Arts

Ilya and Emilia Kabakov Foundation, Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF), Bloomberg Philanthropies, David and Susan Rockefeller, Zoi Psarra Papageorgiou and Alexandra Boitsi Papageorgiou.

Thessaloniki Tourism Organization, Papageorgiou Hospital, OSTEN Art, Anatolia College, De La Salle College, Deutschen Schule Thessaloniki, Primary School of Kato Nevrokopi, 16th Primary School of Dramas, Arsakeio Thessalonikis

The project in Thessaloniki is under the aegis of the Municipality of Thessaloniki.