Paraphrasing architect Alexandros Tombazis, “in Aegean architecture, it is completely unclear where architecture ends and sculpture begins, and -with the whitewashing of the walls and the streets- where sculpture ends and painting begins”.

The sun, the sea, and the wind constitute the characteristic natural elements of an island, and of the Cycladic landscape in particular. The local and landscape elements have influenced the architecture and formation of the settlements, creating the respective imagery and composing their identity. The buildings, their construction materials, their environmental behaviour, and their location within the traditional settlements and the countryside of the Aegean have a lot to teach us about the habits and way of life of local inhabitants throughout history.

The forms of the buildings were dependent on the needs of the people; paraphrasing architect Dimitris Pikionis, this becomes evident in “every stone of folklore architecture […] as nature forced the common man to find the fundamental, necessary element in his physical and spiritual life. That is why art, as well as its expression, is genuine”.

Windmills in Paros

The windmill is “the most complex creation of a mechanism of widespread use of pre-industrial technology”…

The residence of Aspropoulou family in Marpissa

The Aspropoulou residence stands at the centre of the traditional settlement of Marpissa and dates from the 17th century…

Main types of residences in the traditional settlements of Paros

Single-spaced, of squared plan or slightly wide or wide facade, one or two-storey…

Architectural elements in the settlements of Paros

In the course of inhabiting both the houses and the settlement, problems and increasing needs appeared…

Building materials in the Cyclades

The basic pursuit of the inhabitants of small island societies to achieve their viability, given the distance…

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Blue Heritage is an on-line meeting place for people who share their love for life in the Aegean; here, they can share the stories, knowledge, and feelings drawn from the Aegean islands and their inhabitants. It is a modern mosaic of stories that is being constantly enriched and developed thanks to your contribution!