By Maria Gregoriou
The next few days have a bit of everything going on, spread out all over the place. We all know that Limassol is jumping with the carnival spirit right about now, but what can shake up our creative minds in the other cities?
Look no further, for we have the answer.
First up let’s get the kids covered with two happenings. The first event we have up our imaginary sleeve is something you can share with your kids on Valentine’s Day; after all, they are also part of your love equation.
The A.G. Leventis Gallery in Nicosia will be hosting a morning of arts and crafts for children to get into the carnival mood.
Apart from getting creative and creating Venetian masks using mixed media, the kids will also get to learn about the world of European art as well as being introduced to the origins and development of the Venetian carnival tradition and the Italian street theatre, Commedia dell’arte.
After a Saturday of making carnival masks, Sunday will be even more creative as the A.G. Leventis Museum is organising a day of making traditional kites.
Green Monday is quickly approaching (it is on February 23, before you get out your calendars) and an original, hand-made kite will surely light up the sky on the day, as well as the little face of the child holding the string at the end of it.
But why do we fly kites? Ever wondered? Well, the answer is simple really and has no hidden mysterious folktales behind it. It is because flying a kite is an age-old tradition associated with festivals both in Cyprus and across the world. It is an outdoor activity that people of all ages can enjoy and it also has a symbolic meaning in keeping with the start of Lent.
Now we have that out of the way, back to the details of the event.
The museum calls on grandparents, parents and children to work collectively, and with guidance from the museum’s staff, to create kites the old-fashioned way. With some coloured paper, scissors, glue and a whole lot of imagination, the day will start at 10.30am and, by the end of it, older generations will have remembered what it was like for them when they couldn’t wait for Green Monday to see if their kites would reach the highest, and the younger generation will have learned about how to make a kite (as opposed to picking up a plastic one from a kiosk).
Next up, let’s travel to Paphos where the Paphos Archaelogical Museum will be offering an informative guided tour of the exhibition Trauma and Therapy – Cypriot Antiquity and Contemporary Art.
The tour is set for Sunday at 11.30am and it will be in Greek, English and Russian.
This is a unique opportunity to gain insight into artists and their contemporary art works, from sculpture and installation to video and photography.
The exhibition will be running until February 28, so if you miss the tour on Sunday, you still have time to visit the wonders of Cypriot antiquity.
Lastly, we travel to Larnaca with an eye on food and a stomach very much interested in Italian cooking.
If you love pasta, then, oh my, this is surely for you. The Italian chef Alberto Civitella (called the Italian master, or grand maestro if you really want to get into the role of a good student) will be teaching us all about how to make Italian desserts, pizza and calzone and fresh pasta tomorrow.
This is not just a day of learning all about the secrets of creating authentic Italian recipes and dishes, oh no, it is a day to hang out with a celebrity cook, who has taught in Larnaca before and is back by popular demand. Civitella was twice knighted by the President of the Italian Republic for his outstanding services to hospitality, so you might want to call him sir.
Venetian Carnival and Commedia dell’arte
An educational morning dedicated to the carnival season for children from 6-12. February 14. A.G. Leventis Gallery, Nicosia. 10.30am-12.30pm. €10. Tel: 22-668838
Kite making the old-fashioned way. February 15. Leventis Municipal Museum, Nicosia. 10.30am. Free. Tel: 22-661475
A tour of the exhibition Trauma and Therapy – Cypriot Antiquity and Contemporary Art. February 15. Paphos Archaeological Museum, 43 Griva Digeni Avenue, Paphos. 11.30am. In English, Greek and Russian. Tel: 26-306215
Italian Cooking Classes
Cooking classes with Italian chef Alberto Civitella. February 19. Progress Cyprus, Konstantinou Christofidi Street, Sophora Court, Suite 1, Larnaca. 10am-8pm €25. Tel: 24 815 416