A publication on the intangible cultural heritage of Cyprus has been created by the Cyprus National Commission Unesco with the support of the Deputy Ministry of Tourism and the Unesco Chair of the University of Nicosia.
Titled Intangible Cultural Heritage of Cyprus – National Inventory, the publication presents the wealth of traditions and customs that have been preserved across generations and are linked to the lives and activities of Cypriots. From the steps of Cypriot dances to the geometric patterns of Lefkaritika embroidery, the skill and sensitivity of chanting, the ancient techniques of pottery and basket weaving, traditional management practices of the Mediterranean rural landscape and to the preparation and serving of sweet delicacies – trademarks of Cypriot hospitality.
The publication is the most recent on-site photographic documentation of people, places, traditions, practices, techniques, tools and objects, covered by Unesco.
The bilingual edition (in Greek and English) was created to enable local and foreign travellers to discover and experience the richness of traditions and customs that are kept alive to this day in cities and villages of Cyprus. Highlighting their uniqueness, the publication seeks to raise public awareness of the importance of intangible cultural heritage and to promote its use, sustainably in the field of tourism.
The research and editing of the photographs was undertaken by Unesco officer Dr Antigoni Polyneiki and photographer Nikos Loukas. To promote the publication, short films were created, in collaboration with the Unesco Headquarters and the Mediazone Department of the University of Nicosia.
“The cultural heritage of our country,” said Secretary-General of the Cyprus National Unesco Commission Pavlos Paraskevas “is a pole of attraction for visitors from all over the world, is not only the archaeological sites and monuments. It is also the oral traditions and customs that are preserved from generation to generation, such as dance, music, traditional handicrafts, religious festivals, local traditional cuisine, all the elements that compose the traditional culture of our people.”
The publication is available for free on the website of the Cyprus National Commission for Unesco (www.unesco.org.cy)