The main core of the Museum’s collections owes its existence to the indefatigable efforts of founder Yiorgos Anemoyiannis and constant donations from Eleni Kazantzaki. From 1976, when he first conceived of creating a personal museum for Nikos Kazantzakis, until his life came to an end in 2005, Anemoyiannis kept in constant contact with hundreds of individuals, foundations and organizations that held any material evidence, however large or small, of the author’s life and work. The unbounded affection and trust shown by friends, whose donations range from a first edition to an entire letter archive, have led to a thirty-fold increase in the number of artifacts since the museum opened in 1983.
Many have seen the Foundation as the natural home for the safekeeping and showcasing of the material they once owned. Private individuals who have deposited evidence of the author’s life oeuvre at his spiritual home include Anna Sikelianou (who donated letters from Kazantzakis to Angelos Sikelianos), Marika Papaioannou (letters from Kazantzakis to her husband Emile Hourmouzios), Ruth Gorney-Dunkleblum (letters from Kazantzakis to her mother Leha Levin-Dunkelblum).
The Museum now possesses over 50,000 objects, classified into the following collections: