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In at the deep end of light water March 30, 2008

Posted by grhomeboy in Arts Events Cyprus, Arts Exhibitions Cyprus.
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In Cyprus four Paphos-based British artists exhibit works that centre around the theme of water.

The state of art today is such that it can now be created by amateurs with virtually no study, preparation or training. In galleries and exhibition spaces, the amateur aesthete can now compete on equal terms with the masters.

Paphos, in particular, has experienced a full-on amateur take over and with so many new artists now resident there all busy making so much art in so many different ways, no one can possibly make sense of it all. It seems every village has its own art gallery, though few, if any, display much in the way of art that you could stand to look at for long, nothing displayed is made to sustain you, and rarely are you seduced with work that is turbulent, elusive, bold, exhilarating or recklessly new. This is indeed the land of the bland.

The latest exhibition to hit the Paphos scene is a collection of art that will hopefully draw a clear line between the professional and amateur status. A Paphos-based British quartet have recently created a form of watery symbiosis, as artists Keith Walker, Mary Lynne Stadler, Raymond Wilson and Elizabeth Walker launch an exhibition that takes the theme of water and light. Water has no colour of its own so provides the chance for these artists to express an interesting range of emotions. Also water has no form so it’s a technical challenge to describe a convincing physical depth, there’s no gravity, which makes for unique underwater poses by the models just because of their weightlessness.

Retired art teacher Keith Walker was the one who set things in motion when, in 2007, he was loaned an underwater digital camera, making it possible for him to at long last capture the play of sunlight through seawater onto the human body. He then translated these underwater photographic images onto canvas, superimposing layers of thin glazes using a mix of acrylic and oils. His work does indeed evoke the wonderful, ever changing dappled sunlight as it swirls and ripples across the surface of the sea onto the contours of submerged swimmers. At the same time he manages to reflect the wonderful feeling of utter weightlessness experienced by the human form when immersed in our clear blue waters. “I had been trying for years to capture this imagery on camera but it’s only since I acquired a digital camera I was able to freeze that moment and get that wonderful balance of pattern, light and shadow and then use paint to recreate my own visual interpretation,” he said.

Raymond and Elizabeth Walker also acted as the underwater photographic models, and it is Raymond’s paintings and interpretations of life under the surface of the water which may prove to be the most unusual, with his work hopefully leaving a lingering thought or two when you exit the venue. He consistently uses a more narrative feel, visual short stories with an underlying psychological tension and the odd hint of psycho sexual nightmares.

Elizabeth uses the medium of photography and the images look eerily akin to a series of preliminary Henry Moore sketches, and I would strongly urge any innovative owners of a night club or cafe bar to swiftly snap up her evocative images then blow them up to use as stunning pieces of photographic wall art.

Mary Lynne Stadler is a talented lithographer and painter. Here she delves deep into a sort of mythological sea world, her vibrant palette fairly pushing the idea that underneath those sun-kissed waves lays a glorious, secret fantasy world.

Those trotting down to the Kyklos Gallery won’t be overly confused, won’t feel stupid, or intimidated by the art on show, it’s as honest as it can be and the four artists presenting their work genuinely believe in what they are doing. After all, who really knows what is or not serious art, what will or will not be taken seriously one day.

Light Water > Exhibition by four artists Keith Walker, Mary Lynne Stadler, Raymond Wilson and Elizabeth Walker. April 5 to 18. Kyklos Gallery, 6 Minoos Street, Kato Paphos, tel 26 936 681. 10am-1pm 4pm-7pm. Closed Saturday pm and Sunday. 


The Pafos State Forest March 14, 2008

Posted by grhomeboy in Cyprus Paphos, Nature.
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The Pafos State Forest occupies mainly the north-western slopes of the Troodos Range and covers an area of 700k square metres and extends from the districts of Limassol and Nicosia and Pafos at sea level – to the north it reaches up to the villages of Pomos, Kato Pyrgos tis Tillyrias and the occupied village of Varisia. To the east it extends up to the villages of Gerakies, Lemythou etc and to the west up to the villages of Lysos, Kinousa, Argaka and Gialia.

Flora > The Pafos Forest is mostly a natural forest, regenerating itself and the most dominant species found all over the area is the Brutia Pine (Pinus Brutia) – the common wild pine. Smaller trees and shrubs occupy specific biotopes of the forest ecosystem.

The riverine vegetation, which can be found at all elevations includes mainly broadleaves such as the plane-tree (Platanus Orientalis) the alnus tree (Alnus Orientalis), the laurel (Laurus Nobilis) the myrtle (Myrtus Communist) and the bramble (Rubus Sanctus), giving the vegetation a unique combination of colours. In the lowland, high trees become sparse and the small shrubs as well mossy and grassy plants, make up a very rich and dense vegetation of high ecological and aesthetical value.

A special place in the Flora of Pafos Forest is held by the Cyprus cedar (Cedrus Brevifolia). It is the only endemic tree of the Cyprus forests and forms the unique natural forest of the Tipylos slopes and the world famous Cedar Valley.

14-03-08_cyprus_cedar.jpg  The Cyprus Cedar grows and forms pure and mixed strands with the wild pine at 600m up to 1,352m altitude. The presence of the Cyprus Cedar gives a distinct and unique character to the forest ecosystem.

In 1984 the Council of Ministers declared the Tripylos and the Cedar Valley area covering 823 hectares a Nature Reserve for the protection of the flora and fauna according to the provisions of the Forest Law.

The number of different plant species found in the Pafos Forest has been estimated to exceed 600. 50 of these are endemic to Cyprus. The existence of a large number of orchids such as Limodorum Abortivum, Orchis Sancta, Ophrys Levantina and Serapias Vomeracea are found only in Pafos Forest.

14-03-08_cyprus_moufflon.jpg  Fauna > The Pafos Forest was declared a Permanent Game Reserve in 1938 and since then it constitutes a perfect shelter for wildlife. The Cyprus Moufflon the largest endemic mammal of the island lives and reproduces in special biotopes of the Pafos forest. The presence of the fox, hare, hedgehog, rare and protected eagles and other birds, many species of the owl, partridge, wood-pigeon, turtle doves along with different species of snakes and lizards and rare butterflies compose a rich fauna of immense ecological value and importance for Cyprus.

Courtesy of the Pafos Forestry Department, Pafos, Cyprus.

Simply Red live in Paphos next June February 7, 2008

Posted by grhomeboy in Music Life Live Gigs.
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Simply Red > Saturday 7 June 2008

It may be the concert of the year. Simply Red are coming to Cyprus, for a live concert!

Saturday 7 June, at 19:oo hrs, at the  Paphian Stadium, Paphos, Cyprus.

Ticket prices > 99,10 euro at the door, 92,26 euro (pre sale), 128.14 euro for V.I.P.

For more information call > 80 000 222 and 77 777 211.

Art on and in the bottle October 11, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Food Cyprus, Wine And Spirits.
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Limited edition wine bottles launched in Paphos, Cyprus

Wine containers have always been marked to give the drinker a rough idea of the history of the wine. When excavating the tomb of Tutankhamen, Howard Carter found a stock of small amphoras each inscribed with the vintage, vineyard and name of the winemaker. Then, in the 18th century, labels were introduced made of parchment. Later, when glue was commercially available, labels pasted onto wine bottles became the norm.

Over the years many famous artists have been commissioned to create unique wine labels for such illustrious houses such as Mouton Rothschild, and keeping up the tradition here in Cyprus is young wine maker Angelos Tsangarides in partnership with artist Joep Klinkenbijl.

Angelos, owner of the Tsangarides Winery, last month celebrated the launch of his limited edition wine labels at the Palia Polis Restaurant in Paphos. He had commissioned a triptych from artist Joep Klinkenbijl, which will be now be displayed on the bottles of his 2006 range of excellent Ayios Ephraim: rose, red and white. During the cocktail reception, the artist then offered the art work up for auction, which went on to generate much needed funds for the Paphiakos Animal Welfare Charity.

Just for the record, there have been some minor scandals regarding the use of risque artwork on wine labels. A fine example has to be the launch made in the 1980s by a now famous winemaker of his sparkling burgundy carrying the name Rene Pogel. This seemed innocent enough and sales went very well until, that is, someone worked out what Rene Pogel meant when spelt backwards. The wine then had to be hastily withdrawn, but unfortunately I have never seen the label used to accompany the bottle, this I believe could be a real collector’s item now.

Tsangarides Winery > Lemona Village, Paphos. Opening hours Saturday and Sunday 9am-6pm or during the week by appointment. Tel: 26 722777 or 99 459232.

Cypriot artists open their studios > II October 7, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Arts Events Cyprus, Arts Exhibitions Cyprus.
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Some of the artists participating in Open Studios

Chindos >
Where: Forza 9 Gallery, 1 Dem. Papamilthiadous Street, Polis Chrysohous
When: October 6-7 and October 13-14
Contact details: 99418245 and 99127428, chindosframegallery [at] cytanet.com.cy

Marianna Constanti >
Where: 3 Pallados Street, Paphos. From Kennedy Square, turn into Gladstonos Street towards Kato Paphos. First turning right and left again, second building on left hand side.
When: October 6-7
Contact details: 99-402636, boldo77 [at] hotmail.com, www.constantimarianna.com

George Kvezerli >
Where: L Tekniart, 16 Kinyras Street, Paphos, just behind the law courts near Moufflon and Travel Express.
When: October 20-21
Contact details: 99947439, vampy_tgv [at] yahoo.com

Karima Ben Otman >
Where: Karima Art Studio, 29 Ankaras Street, Limassol
When: All weekends throughout October
Contact details: 99-022912, koko [at] kokoart.com, www.benotman.com

Cypriot artists open their studios > I October 7, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Arts Events Cyprus, Arts Exhibitions Cyprus.
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Seeing the place where an artist works gives far more insight into their finished product than merely observing it in a gallery. This year, 88 artists from Paphos and Limassol open their places of work to the public throughout October

Ever walked into a gallery and felt like you could cut through the atmosphere with a knife? An artist may pour his heart and soul into one of his works, but as it hangs in the exhibition hall, all that’s left is a finished product waiting to be purchased according to visual appeal. When the fairest of them all is taken home and placed on that bit of empty wall you wanted to fill, you’ve got a picture before you that is meant to speak a thousand words. But are you really in tune with what the artist was thinking at the time of creation?

Last year, artists from the Paphos district opened their personal workshops to the public for the first time ever, creating enormous interest as art lovers travelled even to remote villages to catch a glimpse of what happens behind closed doors.

This year, Open Studios is expanding beyond Paphos to cover the Limassol district as well. Each artist involved in the occasion will open their studio door to the public throughout various weekends in October. Artists who don’t have their own workshop will be exhibiting at one of the participating galleries. From Polis Chrysochous all the way to the centre of Limassol, there are 22 different locations that are calling out to be discovered by art lovers.

Since the idea was launched in England some 20 years ago, it has spread and gained popularity worldwide. Very different from the usual experience of visiting galleries, Open Studios gives you the chance to get to know artists in an informal atmosphere as you enjoy the privilege of spending time chatting and learning more about how various types of art work are produced.

“A traditional art exhibition can certainly be a bit sterile,” explains one of the organisers, Nic Costa. “Whereas walking into a gallery can be a bit cold and impersonal, Open Studios is all about getting to the know the person who has created the art work that hangs on the wall.” What were they thinking when they created the specific image? And how do they feel about the outcome? These are just some of the interesting things you can chat about when you meet the persona behind the picture that glares back at you.

Although Open Studios is something new for Cyprus, last year proved that locals are warmly embracing the idea. “I will never forget one Russian lady who visited every single on the artist on the list,” says Nic. “She was just so excited by the idea that she could spend a few weekends travelling around some beautiful parts of the island while popping in to discover hidden gems in personal spaces that are usually closed off to the public.”

You’ll have the unique opportunity to discover beautiful pieces of art that you wouldn’t normally stumble upon and if something appeals to you, it’s all down to a one-to-one transaction between you and the artist. “Being an artist tends to be an isolated occupation and Open Studios is a non profit making initiative that aims to directly benefit the creator without any of the commissions that burden the artist,” Nic explains.

With 88 artists taking part in the occasion this year, those involved come from very different backgrounds and cultures, and many of whom have enjoyed years of experience. And don’t expect just the usual paintings and sculptures as the studio doors open; there will also be video installations, photographic works, prints, textiles and mosaics to set your sights on. “There’s no selection committee to judge what goes in and what stays out,” says Nic. “The event is open to everyone that has had at least a year’s experience making art works. Because of the democratic system, it’s a complete mix and match of works with both amateurs and professionals taking part.”

With so many interesting things to see, organisers urge everyone to tell friends and family about the scheme. If you don’t live in Paphos or Limassol, it may be a good idea to plan a weekend trip down to the respective towns so you can really soak up the great atmosphere.

You can pick up your Open Studios guide now for free from supermarkets, kiosks and other retail outlets throughout Paphos and Limassol. In October, look out for the banners bearing the distinctive Open Studios logo on a blue and yellow background hanging near the entrances of each artists’ workplace. The special website, as well as the guidebook, provides the dates each artist will open their studio, as well as directions to each studio, addresses, and phone numbers.

Open Studios > Artists opening their doors to the public in weekends throughout October, 10am-1pm and 2pm-6pm. Personal workshops and galleries throughout Limassol and Paphos. For further information visit > www.openstudioscy.com

House of Dionysos in Paphos closing for restoration October 2, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Archaeology Cyprus.
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The House of Dionysos will be closed from October 8th to December 8th 2007

The Department of Antiquities of the Ministry of Communications and Works announces a change concerning the period during which the House of Dionysos at the Archaeological site of Kato Paphos will be closed for the public due to restoration works.

This will be between the 8th of October 2007 and the 8th of December 2007.