Hephaistos Summer School – Archaeology, History and Technology of western Jewelry under the light of the Acropolis

Join the Athens experience at one of the world’s leading institutions for jewelry in a two week long, summer school program. The Ilias Lalaounis Jewelry Museum in Athens, Greece will challenge participants to discover the fascinating world of Ancient Greece and the history of western jewelry through its most spectacular artifacts.

16 – 29 June 2025
Academic Credit: 6 ECTS / 3SCH
Includes: at least 45 hours of on-site classes / study visits with instruction on ancient and modern metalsmithing practices  / a variety of expert lead lectures on cultural history / fieldtrips to archaeological sites and museums. The program is organized through the Ilias Lalaounis Jewelry Museum Educational Center with esteemed Greek and International academics, archaeologists and jewelry experts. The program is offered with accreditation by the National & Kapodistrian University of Athens and provides 3 US college credits or 6 ECTS credits for participants who meet the University’s criteria for undergraduate admission. Students may gain credit from their own universities.

The Ilias Lalaounis Jewelry Museum


CLASSES (required)
The history and archaeology of Ancient Greek jewelry from Classical Greece to the Byzantine era will be followed by a survey of the history of western European jewelry up to the most amazing contemporary artistic productions. The class on Studio Jewelry is tailored to the discipline of contemporary art jewelry and researches its creative methods. Participants will map diverse aspects of wearability and social coding of the body, as also investigate how concepts and cultural values materialize into jewelry formats. This exploration opens a new dimension to students concerning individual creativity and its application with tools and machinery in different vocations.
Prof. Dimitris Plantzos (University of Athens): Ancient Greek Art: The Archaeology of Classical Jewelry
Ioanna I. Lalaouni (ILJM Director): History of Western Jewelry
Vivi Touloumidi (Artist): Studio Jewelry in Theory and Practice
All classes will be held at the Ilias Lalaounis Jewelry Museum Lecture Hall, Exhibition Halls, Library, and Studio Workshops

LECTURES (required)
Guest lectures will be offered throughout the course on a wide range of topics, from illicit trafficking of antiquities to Athenian architecture and museum management.
All lectures will be held at the Ilias Lalaounis Jewelry Museum Lecture Hall.

STUDY VISITS (required)
Participants will enjoy instructive guided tours of and on-site lectures by academics in the historical center of Athens and Museums with the most important jewelry collections. These include the Acropolis archaeological site and Museum, the National Archaeological Museum and the Byzantine and Christian Museum. Visits to jewelry making workshops will introduce students to the secrets of successful jewelry making in Greece. Open doors to the havens of industrial units of fine jewelers and artist’s studios will give an insight of the exciting use of ancient and modern goldsmithery techniques and the use of nontraditional materials for the delight of contemporary creations.

A number of optional extracurricular activities are offered as part of the program. Participants will explore the ancient and modern wonders of the Peloponnese on a weekend trip with tours to ancient Mycenae and the beautiful city of Nafplion, or day tours to the ancient oracle of Delphi and a cruise to the island of Aigina. Optional excursions include a ride to Cape Sounion with a tour at the Temple of Poseidon and a professional lead tour on the history of geology. During their stay participants will be offered to visit summer highlights of Athens, to outdoor events such as to watch a movie at the awarded open air Cine Thiseion. Finally entertaining activities include a lesson on Greek traditional dance and performance at the outdoor Dora Stratou Dancing Theater.

We welcome applicants from a wide range of liberal art studies, such as archaeology, art history and cultural studies, museum studies, arts administration and fine arts after completion of at least their sophomore year. The program is open also to individuals who are looking for further education on the history of jewelry in a unique Athenian experience.

A minimum enrollment of 10 is required. The program reserves the right to cancel the course by May 1st 2025 if minimum enrollment is not achieved. Maximum number of attendees: 25.

Tuition fees are charged for the program. 10% of the Participants are eligible for tuition scholarships. Tuition fees are 1.800 euros, inclusive of all study visits in Athens museums, sites and workshops, welcome and farewell receptions, as well as teaching materials and research assistance.

For those students requiring credits from the Hephaistos Summer School Program, accreditation fees apply. The cost is 400€ . Please note: All accreditation fees are non-refundable. Fees effective since January 1st 2018. All fees are non-refundable, regardless of the accreditation decision. Full Tuition and Accreditation Payments due: May 1st 2025.


* FACULTY LED OPTION (Professor leading 5+ students)

  • For 5+ students attending, a faculty member may join and attend the Program without tuition fees. The offer includes attendance to all classes held on the ILJM premises. Field trips, tickets, transportation, and meals obliges the Participant.
  • Free accommodation at designated guest house is offered to the Participant.
  • The Participant may be assigned to deliver an hour-long presentation on their field of his/her study.
  • If the extra studio component is chosen, the Participant is required to oversee students’ program and chaperon students at venue.
  • Please note that there is a limited number of seats for faculty members / per university.

* Information about the Studio Component

  • The faculty-lead studio component at the Ilias Lalaounis jewelry workshop, at South Kifissia, will operate for a minimum of 5 and maximum of 15 students with a background in arts.
  • Each group must be chaperoned by one ‘Participant’.
  • Students will use the allocated facility at the workshop and may be mentored by the workshop’s jewelers. An individual jeweler’s bench is assigned to each student.
  • Students are asked to bring a working project to work on during their stay at the workshop. The work will be supervised by the university designated ‘Participant’ and the designated museum curator with the support of the Lalaounis workshop staff.
  • Transportation to and from the workshop is organized separately.
  • For a group transportation please check with JSS Administration office.
  • The studio component takes place on the second Thursday and Friday of the program, between 8.00 – 14.00.
  • Security and code of conduct of the workshop will apply to all participants.
  • If meal plan is chosen, the students will be offered their meal at the workshop at 11.00 am.
  • Students who will be credited for the program, and therefore required to take the exam, may shift study and exam time and day to Friday afternoon.
  • Studio work is also encouraged within the Museum premises at ZEM / ZEDET.



Look for near future announcements.

For more information please write to:


Classes on the history of jewelry will include ILJMuseum tours of the international contemporary artistic jewelry collection

Students at the roof terrace of the ILJMuseum