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Art exhibition in London commemorates Cypriot refugee stamp

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Art exhibition in London commemorates Cypriot refugee stamp

3.tassos Preparatory Drawing For

    An art exhibition dedicated to the Refugee Stamp, established by the government of Cyprus immediately after the Turkish invasion in 1974, is being hosted in London.

    The exhibition, titled “Refugee Stamp: The Story of a Symbol. The Testimony of Displacement through Art,” is organized by the High Commission of the Republic of Cyprus.

    Curated by art historian Maria Paphiti, the exhibition was previously showcased last spring at the House of Representatives in Nicosia, under the auspices of its President, Annita Demetriou, and in Ayia Napa during the summer.

    The inauguration in London will take place on Wednesday, January 24, at 7 p.m., by the High Commissioner of Cyprus in the United Kingdom, Andreas Kakouris, and will remain open until February 2.

    The Refugee Stamp is based on an exceptional piece of art by the renowned Greek engraver A. Tassos (1914-1985), titled “Cyprus 1974.”

    The artwork depicts a girl sitting on a suitcase in front of barbed wire fences and has had a significant impact on the cultural production of Cyprus over the last five decades.

    In September 1974 , the Cypriot government introduced a stamp, commonly known as the Refugee Stamp, with the aim of assisting refugees resulting from the Turkish invasion.

    The refugee levy, symbolized by the stamp, serves as a poignant reminder of the invasion and the occupation of 37% of Cyprus’s territory.

    The stamp continues to be affixed to anything mailed by the Cypriot Postal Services, both domestically and internationally, thus informing the international community about the ongoing Cyprus issue.

    The exhibited artworks reveal the process of creating the Refugee Stamp, based on archival and philatelic material, as well as relevant artworks .

    The woodcut by A. Tassos is showcased, emphasizing its influence on the artistic production of Cyprus over the past 50 years.

    Art exhibition in London commemorates Cypriot refugee stamp

    The exhibition features iconic works by one of the “fathers of Cypriot art,” Telemachos Kanthos (1910-1993), acclaimed artists Lefteris Economou (1930-2007) and Andreas Ladommatos (1940), as well as distinguished contemporary artists such as Georgios Gavriel (1959), Michalis Kountouris (1960), Lia Lapithi (1963), Andreas Nicolaou (1966), Panayiotis Pasantas (1971), Elena Sarris Varnava (1956), Jane MacLean, Katerina Christodoulou (1960), and George Pantazis (1965-2023).

    Many of the artworks are based on photographs by the well-known Cypriot photographer living in London, Doros Partasides (1944), who was at the forefront of the war as a photographer and cinematographer for the Cyprus Broadcasting Corporation (RIK) in 1974.

    Doros Partasides also contributes additional material to the exhibition.

    The artworks visually document the consequences of displacement, applicable to all refugees, demonstrating that pain and loss, primal expressions of human nature, remain unchanged regardless of time and place .

    The exhibition is supported by the Ministry of Culture of Cyprus.

    Art exhibition in London commemorates Cypriot refugee stamp

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