The Cultural Village of Lemba project is expected to be completed by mid December according to the community leader Thucydides Chrysostomou.

The creation of the centre foresees the building of facilities for a School of Fine Arts, while the complex of upgraded infrastructures will also have multi-functional facilities, workshops and exhibition halls, in addition to accommodation for teachers, students and other artists.

The project, with a total budget of €4 million, is under the technical auspices of the deputy ministry of culture, Chrysostomou said.

Referring to UK Cypriot artist and founder of the Cyprus College of Art, Stass Paraschos, the community leader said the college, started by the artist in 1969 and moved to Lemba in 1985, had benefitted from him attracting established and new artists to it, and promoting Cyprus as a place for the development of contemporary artistic expression.

Lemba has been an important centre of culture and creation since ancient times, Chrysostomou said, noting that in the Middle Ages it was known for the production and export of glazed pottery.

After the Turkish invasion many artists settled in the village, including Paraschos, whose presence in the village from 1976 to 2014 was seminal.

The aim of the Cultural Village project is to establish a local “cultural lung” with the College of Art at its core, the community leader said, adding:

“The project will contribute to the development of artistic education, highlighting the rich cultural heritage of our region, and promote Cyprus as a place for contemporary artistic creation.”

In addition to the Cultural Village, Lemba is slated for other improvements including to the village square which will be connected to the Cultural Village via bridge, to its sports facilities, and to two green areas which will see tree-planting and installation of playgrounds, one on the beach near Kissonerga and the other in the area of Ayia Marina.