A significant aspect
of the history of production
The Chios Mastic Museum is located in the Mastichochoria, a group of medieval villages in Southern Chios, the only site in the Mediterranean where the skinos plant of the variation Pistacia lentiscus Chia is cultivated, from which gum mastic is produced.
The aim of the Chios Mastic Museum is to highlight the production history of the cultivation and processing of mastic, also incorporating it to the cultural landscape of Chios. Through the inclusion of traditional mastic cultivation in the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO in 2014, the emphasis is on the timelessness and the sustainability of the product of Chios.
The permanent exhibition has been organized on the basis of the findings of the extensive interdisciplinary research programme about mastic, undertaken by the Piraeus Bank Group Cultural Foundation.
Visitors discover the traditional know-how of mastic cultivation, understand how the management of mastic shaped the agricultural and inhabited landscape in the south of Chios, learn about a significant aspect of the history of production in Greece, and see the spreading and various uses of mastic. The museum experience is completed by a visit to the open-air exhibition where visitors become acquainted with the mastic tree exactly during the cultivation phase at that time of the year.
The Chios Mastic Museum was created by the Piraeus Bank Group Cultural Foundation, which has also undertaken its operation. It is housed in a building specially designed for the museum on land granted by the Chios Gum Mastic Growers Association. The project was included in the Operational Programme “Development, Entrepreneurship and Innovation” OPCE ΙΙ, through the National Strategic Reference Framework 2007-2013, and was co-financed by the Public Investment Programme and the European Regional Development Fund.