top of page

Vasilios Ithakisios (1877-1977)

Vasilios Ithakisios was born in Akrotiri, Mytilene, on February 26, 1877. His father came from Ithaca, but he married in Mytilene and settled there permanently, where he worked as a shipbuilder. He, however, took up painting. His real surname was Georganas, but he adopted "Ithakisios" from his father's ancestry.

For twenty years he chose to stay on Olympus, in a cave, which was pointed out to him by Christos Kakkalos, the Litochorite who was the first to climb to the top of mount Olympus. "Here neither the snow, nor the water stands", Kakkalos told him, and Ithakisios settled there, to spend 20 summers. He named it "Muse Asylum" and lived there in his solitude as a true artist. "I owe the health and stamina I have to this day to Olympus," said Ithakisios in 1976 at the age of 99.

He himself did not enroll himself in any School, although his works can generally be considered neo-impressionist. "My school is the eternal source of inspiration and mental response with the landscape and the people. ... In any case, Olympus and its changing beauty, at all times and in all seasons, is my only inexhaustible source", states Vasilios Ithakisios.

He spent the last years of his life in the nursing home "Melathron Nursing Home". He always longed for Olympus and wished to return to it. In May 1977, at the age of 100, he was admitted to the infirmary of the nursing home, as he was now frequently hallucinating. During one of them, he managed to pull down the rails of his bed, went to the window to gaze at Olympus and as he bent down, he fell from a height of one meter and hit his death.

The love of Ithakisios for the area of Olympus, resulted in him very often referring to Litochoro as "my village". In July 1960, the then Community of Litochoro, wanting to honor Vasilios Ithakisios, declared him an honorary citizen of Litochoro.

Today, the Municipal Gallery of Litochoro bears the name "VASILIOS ITHAKISIOS", as a small tribute to the painter, who loved and praised Olympus with his art.

bottom of page