By Maria Gregoriou
Cyprus is very aptly referred to as Othello’s island, as Shakespeare’s play is set on the island. This reference is also taken up by the third annual conference on medieval and renaissance art, literature, social and cultural history, taking place from Friday until Sunday at the Centre for Visual Arts and Research in Nicosia.
We may be home to Othello, but there is much more history to our island. The medieval Kingdom of Cyprus was one of the wealthiest and most sophisticated royal courts in Europe, whose legacy continues to have an impact on European culture.
While the upcoming get together of great academics focuses on past times and history, it is also a way for us to take a step forward, and discuss new ways to think about certain aspects of the history of this period and ways in which they may be linked together.
Apart from the main conference events, there will also be some extra activities goes on.
On Friday there will be a public lecture by Dr Chris Laoutaris of the Shakespeare Institute, who is the author of the book Shakespeare and the Countess. After the lecture there will be a conference meal where further discussions and socialising can take place.
As Saturday in World Poetry Day, all those involved in the conference can view a number of screenings and listen to some poetry and prose readings at the Home for Co-operation, under the name White Flags: Bridges within and between Lebanon and Cyprus.
The conference officially ends at 6pm on Sunday but on Monday there will be a trip to the painted churches of the Troodos Mountains going on.
Othello’s Island 2015
Conference on Medieval and Renaissance Art, Literature, Social and Cultural history. March 20-22. CVAR, 285 Ermou Street, Nicosia. 10am. Registration and full programme on www.othellosisland.org. Tel: 22-300999