03 June. 2021
If we could think of a building that best represents the impressive development of modernity in Cyprus and, at the same time, the turbulent recent history of the island, that would undoubtedly be the Ledra Palace Hotel in Nicosia. The Ledra Palace embodies and exemplifies the cosmopolitan and multicultural character of the city, while its own history simultaneously reflects the social and political developments on the island.
The exhibition Ledra Palace: Dancing on the Line
, organised by the Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia and the CYENS Centre of Excellence, explores this ‘palace-like’ hotel as a place of memory, history, culture and politics and invites the visitor to see the hotel through the eyes of various protagonists: guests, employees, architects, artists, soldiers, United Nations staff and many others.
In the Temporary Exhibitions Room of the Museum, exhibits, memories and stories of people who lived in or have personal experiences of the Ledra Palace relate, on the one hand, the adventurous recent history of the island and, on the other, reveal modernity in Cyprus. The exhibition aims to ‘revive’ the history of the Ledra Palace in a multivocal and multidimensional way and, through this story, to induce the visitor to discuss the modern events of Cyprus. In parallel, it aspires to honour Nicosia, as well as to demonstrate modernity in Cyprus. The history of the Ledra Palace unfolds another
narrative: that of modernism and an intense, cosmopolitan social life. Oral testimonies, in combination with private photographs and objects, take the lead in this process. The exhibition is not confined to the ‘golden era’ of the Ledra Palace as a hotel or to its interesting social history, but it spans from the establishment of the hotel until today, proving that the personal, the social and the political are always interconnected.
It should be noted that the exhibition could not have been realised without the kind loans of photographs, objects and various testimonial material from foundations, organisations and private collectors, as well as from those who worked or lived in the Ledra Palace.
Emerging technologies and innovative applications developed by the CYENS Centre of Excellence have an important role in this exhibition. They bring to life the history of the hotel, which, due to its conversion into UN barracks and its location in the Buffer Zone, is no longer easily accessible. Technology will help older people to remember and younger people to know what the luxury Ledra Palace Hotel looked like more than 70 years ago – to travel in time to a period starting from the creation of the Ledra Palace and reaching up to today.
The exhibition was curated by Loukia Loizou Hadjigavriel, Antigone Heraclidou and Theopisti Stylianou-Lambert, while the general coordination was organised by the Director of the Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia, Demetra Theodotou Anagnostopoulou, and the curator Maria Patsalosavvi.
The exhibition is accompanied by a publication rich in essays and photographs provided by academics and researchers who have approached the Ledra Palace Hotel from various points of view.
During the exhibition, physical and online tours, presentations and educational programmes will take place.
1 June – 31 October 2021
The Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia, Temporary Exhibitions Room,
15-17 Ippokratous St, Laiki Geitonia, 1011 Nicosia
The Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia, CYENS Centre of Excellence
- A. G. Leventis Foundation
- The CYENS Centre of Excellence has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement no. 739578; this project has also received funding from the Government of the Republic of Cyprus through the Deputy Ministry of Research, Innovation and Digital Policy.
Ledra Palace Hotel PLC, CyBC, Press and Information Office, Association of Friends of the Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia and the A. G. Leventis Gallery, Nicosia Municipality, Cyprus University of Technology
Media sponsor: Kathimerini