Establishing a Cypriot feel full of culture, beauty, and vibrancy
The new terminals of Pafos and Larnaka International Airports were inaugurated in 2008 and 2009, respectively. Upon handover, the company which assumed the design and construction of the two airports, along with representatives from the shareholders of the Hermes consortium, had introduced the concept “Sense of Place”. The principal objective was for the airports to express and promote the rich cultural identity of the island through a modern interpretation that would be reflected with artwork created by local artists.
Enhancing the Sense of Place concept
Ten years later, Hermes Airports following its successful commitment to operate state-of-the-art airports and drive traffic to its peak, took on the promise to enhance the Sense of Place concept and broaden the idea beyond art. With the guidance of a curator, research was carried out based on a long process of material collection related to Cyprus, which took into consideration all the characteristics that signify today's life on the island through its evolution in history. Following the evaluation of the aesthetic and communication possibilities of all elements recorded, the volume of information was classified into large thematic categories, resulting in the creation of 3 pillars chosen to be expressed using all senses - vision, sound, smell, taste, touch – alongside the variability of a typical airport environment.
Sounds of birds, and the bursting smell of blooming citrus trees, herbs, and roses.
The first pillar is related to nature, Cyprus’ geology, flora, and fauna. A wealth of infinite sounds, colours, and shapes originating from the indigenous varieties of wild plants and flowers, the radiance from the endless sunshine, the distinctive sound of the sea flowing on rocks and shells, the humming of the wind in the foliage of the trees, the unique sounds of birds, but most of all the bursting smell of blooming citrus trees, herbs, and roses.
Elements derived from multicultural influences that have been developed over the historical course of the island.
The second pillar is associated with the elements derived from the multicultural influences that have been developed over the historical course of the island. Cyprus had lengthy periods of mainly Greek and intermittent Anatolian, Levantine, Byzantine, Turkish, and Western European influences, whereby the various conquerors had added elements that today form the unique identity of Cyprus. Such references are found primarily in architecture, followed by arts and crafts, music, cuisine, and the Cypriot dialect.
And their way of life on the island, their personality, customs, and traditions.
The third pillar is linked to the people of Cyprus, their way of life on the island, their personality, customs, and traditions. All traditional Cypriot homes were incorporating an enclosed courtyard, which not only was distinct due to its whitewashed surfaces, stone elements, and pungent colours and smells from its garden, but also for describing the people’s social behaviour. Within the courtyard, people felt intimacy, freedom of movement, and expression, have welcomed guests, an expression of innate hospitality that characterises the Cypriot society even until nowadays.
A staircase inspired by the house of Dionysus.
Hermes Airports worked closely with the Department of Antiquities and the Cyprus Institute to capture any detail with High-Definition cameras from the colourful mosaics in the House of Dionysus. As a result, it is the renewal to one of the main staircases in Larnaka Airport, connecting the Departures with the Arrivals Area. Learn more
Departing, migrating, travelling, and flying
"Through this research, Maria Loizidou is referring to the phenomenon of people travelling for reasons and causes that vary, while the flow remains constant and timeless. Through her skilful work, the artist meditates on the Cypriot creative heritage alongside the islands’ nature
, by reconstructing both with the practice of crocheting sewing with metal threads and sheets. The result is a synthesis of nets, forms, and colours of flying and flora elements, which are reflected on the visitors, calling them to reflect on their journey, the journey of others as well as the cycle of nature". Iosif Hadjikyriakos, Curator
By Valentinos Charalambous, 1967 / Mosaic
Larnaka International Airport, departure area
The artwork was created by Valentinos Charalambous in 1967 and it was a landmark at Nicosia International Airport until the illegal Turkish invasion of 1974. Today, the same artwork becomes a landmark of Larnaka International Airport. The rescue and hosting of this artwork at the biggest airport in the country was a top cultural priority for Hermes Airports as it symbolizes the progress of our country through the ages. Learn More
By Angelos Makrides, 2009 - Material: Bronze
Larnaka International Airport, departure area
Makrides’ work was made in 2009. Twelve bronze torsi, eleven male and one female, form a circle, in the middle of which is placed a pot. The circle is the usual arrangement of the participants during a ceremonial gathering. In this case the gathering takes place around a ceremonial pot, symbolically referring to the hearth and the sacred fire. The hearth symbolizes origins, and is associated with the eternal flame, which in turn implies commemoration. Learn More
By Helene Black, 2008 / Material: Steel, metallic auto paint, blue fluorescent lights, granite
Pafos International Airport, Entrance
«As visitors arrive at the airport of Pafos, they are greeted by a cluster of strange figures that resemble small, smiling people. Their hands are spread out and, together with their bodies; they appear to form a cross. This dynamic composition is a work by artist Helene Black, and has, as its starting point, the distinctive picrolite figurines dating from the Chalcolithic period (IVth-IIIrd millennium BC), many of which were found in the area of Pafos. They are believed to be connected to the worship of fertility and the subsequent sanction of the worship of Aphrodite, the Goddess of Beauty, in Pafos. The harmonic geometry of these figurines allows the artist to shape an impressive complex of figures, which welcome the visitor and are governed by intense vertical and horizontal axes connecting the sky and the ground. The colors of the work are inspired by the earthly hues of Cyprus, while the pebbles and the blue light radiating from the decorated base, refer to the sea and the birth of the goddess. The shadows of the forms, massive tessera on the granite floor, dynamically complete the composition and appositely relate Cyprus’ rich past with its modern face». Learn More
By Nikos Kouroussis, 2009 / Material: Mixed media
Larnaka Airport – Arrivals Baggage Claim Hall
"Nikos Kouroussis’ work, in Larnaka airport Arrivals – Baggage Claim Hall stands as an expression par excellence of the relation between Cyprus and copper. As he approaches, the visitor sees an army of dozens of copper ships floating and swaying in the air. As he comes closer, he perceives them more like ears dancing an ancient Cypriot dance. When he reaches them, he understands that they pop out of twelve illuminated by blue neon, transparent Plexiglas cubes. Cubes that gestate twelve distinct images of memory, history, and culture. Twelve Pandora’s boxes, each one containing raw materials and objects, memories and reminiscences: Wood and metal, salt and vinegar, cuneiform writing, idols, and archaic capitulums, Aphrodite’s thread”. Twelve stops in the long journey of History. Twelve moments in time, where the blue light lends a sense of immortality. An immortality that connects the earth with heaven, the man with cosmos". Learn More
By Theodoulos Gregoriou, 2009 / Material: Inox, aluminium, leds
Larnaka Airport – Parking Area
The silken, steel cones that animatedly reach for the sky resemble metal cypresses. It is well known that these trees have since antiquity connected the upper world to the world below, the underworld. The work is called Clepsydra, hourglass, and the viewer focuses on three major steel heads, cut crosswise, which intersect on vertical planes with the impressive metal cone structure. These are the heads of ancient Cypriots, for the making of which, the artist consulted the originals, kept at the Cypriot Museum. Amongst them, the most impressive woman’s head from Arsos.
By Theodoulos Gregoriou, 2009 / Material: Cement, inox, minerals, leds
Larnaka Airport – Parking Area
By Marianna Constanti, 2008 / Material: Mixed media, C-type photography
Pafos International Airport, departure area
The artist is inspired by female faces, the faces of the women from Pafos. Women, young and old, from all walks of life and social and cultural stratums, from the urban web but also the villages in the area. These images are blended with distinctive depictions of forms associated with the worship of Aphrodite, from various periods of antiquity. By her faddish technique, that of the modern photo-mosaic, Constanti creates an impressive photographic panorama, a cubist collage comprising of a multitude of forms, a multitudinous portrait of Cyprus and its hospitable face. Learn More
By Maria Loizidou, 2020 / Material:Handwoven inox mesh, metal's sheets
Larnaka International Airport, Departure Area
Since October 2020, the artwork “Volant Migrants” by Maria Loizidou, is the handmade grid under which visitors travelling through Larnaka International Airport get the chance to pass under on their way to their journey. Four surfaces, four seasons, four points on the horizon
, mark the airport area and transform it into an emblematic point of reference when departing towards an eternal voyage both for birds and people who have as a common journey their passage through Cyprus. Learn More