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Photographer compares life in Paphos and Jerusalem

Black and white photographs currently decorate part of the Anassa Hotel in Paphos as local photographer Michael Kouloumis exhibits his work. The exhibition titled From Paphos to Jerusalem: Stone, Cloth, Flesh and Water started in early May and about a week or so remains to catch it.

Kouloumos presents images of his native Paphos with others taken in the city of Jerusalem. From Pafos to Jerusalem: Stone, Cloth, Flesh, and Water draws the viewer’s attention to the contrasts between the two cities. In Jerusalem, stone is a constant background for the images, depicting structures such as the Western Wall, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the souks of the Muslim quarter in a city that is sacred to three major religions.

Cloth also makes a recurring presence, as portraits of people in Jerusalem depict how clothing expresses religious identity. On the contrary, in coastal Paphos, water is an invitation, as locals and vacationers alike are drawn to the pleasant waters of the Mediterranean Sea. The Paphos-based photos portray bathers entering the sea, resting on the shore, and rinsing themselves off in communal showers. More flesh is exposed here, suggesting a different cultural identity.

“The contradiction between the two cities portrayed in the exhibition,” comment the organisers, “aims not at insulting any culture, religion or ethnicity but to project a dignified image of the people in the photographs. It aims at cultivating tolerance and respect that transcends the taboos and boundaries laid before us.”


From Paphos to Jerusalem: Stone, Cloth, Flesh, and Water

Photography exhibition by Michael Kouloumos with black and white images from Paphos and Jerusalem. Until June 1. Anassa Hotel, Paphos. Tel: 26-888000

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