By Bejay Browne
A NEW clock has been unveiled in Paphos at a ceremony in the coastal town. The vertical creation now stands at the entrance to the archaeological park in Kato Paphos.
According to a release by Paphos municipality, the project was launched by mayor of Paphos, Phedonas Phedonos, and Sotiris Hadjiminas, who lives and works in Switzerland and who commissioned the project in commemoration of his late wife.
By pressing the button, the clock was illuminated and Phedonos said that: “the city is changing, and with a firm step, Paphos is entering a path of recovery and modernisation, and 2017 will work as a catalyst on many levels.”
The mayor also noted that the clock symbolises that Paphos and its inhabitants are starting a new rebirth and way forward.
Renowned Paphos based architect and designer, Costas Koutsoftides, created the clock. He told the Cyprus Mail: “Mr. Hadjiminas commissioned me to design the clock in commemoration of his late wife Erna. It was an idea he had 25 years ago, but the local municipal council at the time rejected his offer, saying that the clock shouldn’t be in the harbour but in town.”
The architect said that Hadjiminas then abandoned the idea for some time, until the project came to life after he recently discussed, and quickly received approval, from new mayor of Paphos Phedonas Phedonos.
“I assume he chose me because he probably liked the kind of architecture I design,” he said.
Hadjiminas said that the ceremony signified the end of a 20-year adventure for him, noting that “after this period and with the help of the mayor he had managed to create the clock which for him is an indication of the progress.”
Koutsoftides said that large open outdoor space required a recognisable vertical element where the object then becomes a landmark. Especially when the aesthetics are identified with an important archaeological site which hosts prominent Roman villas with amazing mosaics, some of which are described in the column-clock.
The designer said that the clock functions as the precursor to the main archaeological site and each side of the structure represents one of the four roman villas with the main names of the personalities that appear on the floor of the ancient mosaics.
The design and construction took around three months and the inspiration came from the actual remains in the archaeological site, “Live History and time”, he said.
The clock is electrically powered and time adjustment takes place via a satellite signal, so that the clock can follow at any time, the seasonal change of time.
The construction is made of pre-oxidized weathered steel plates that refers to the nearby sea and passing ships.
Standing 7 meters tall, it is illuminated with led strip lights at night-time.
The clock also has a “Lovers Seat” which references the love hymn of Antigone by Sophocles, said the designer. The entire complex is framed by a low skirting that is illuminated at night with blue strip light, and the seat with red.
“On the back rest the beginning of the hymn is cut through and on the seat the main names of the personalities of the tragedy. Natural and artificial light plays with the cut words creating interesting dialogue between the materials according to the hour of the day,” he noted.
In addition, the existing flower bed has been enriched with low bushes with purple flowers.
The programme included a musical welcome by the Symphony Band of the European University Cyprus, under the direction of Dr John Miralis and was presented