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Cyprus History

Trying to include in my art works a painting of the history of Cyprus, I thought that a characteristic would be the religious influence left behind by each conqueror of the island as well as the depiction of wars that prevailed through the centuries. A history of many centuries full of wars and conquests.

A conqueror succeeded the other and the population had to endure and to hope that the next conqueror would be better than the precedent. However this was not the case as the conqueror preceding the last was about to be the worst for the history and the future of Cyprus. The Ottoman conquest was proven to be the worst because as a result was the invasion in 1974 and the occupation of 38% of the island.

The history of Greek culture has been alienated, destroyed and conquered by the Turkish intruder that tries to degrade and to eliminate and to impose his own culture ignoring a culture history of thousands of years. It is deplorable for a person to see the losses of his culture and for this reason I wanted with my own way to portray via the art a short optical retrospection of the past and the history of Cyprus.

 

 

 

Cyprus - Cyprus History by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH1

Cyprus History

Original painting.

90cm X 72cm
Oil on Canvas

 

 

Chronologically beginning we see (on the right bottom side) a symbol carved in stone, the symbol of fertility ( Earth Goddess) that was found in the Settlement of Choirokoitia, at the Neolithic period.

Cyprus - Symbol of fertility and Goddess Aphrodite by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH2

Symbol of fertility and Goddes Aphrodite

The symbol of fertility (in front the Goddess Aphrodite) that was found in Choirokoitia. It is a old religious symbol and it may symbolize infinity.

Behind is the Goddess Astarte , with a birth face embracing a child. She is a Phoenician Goddess which was worshipped at the 4th approximately millennium and she was likely the Goddess of fertility and hunting.

Cyprus - The Goddess Astarte.  by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH3

The Goddes Astarte

Phoenician Goddess

.

 

Next to her we see the Goddess with the lifted hands for which we do not know what exactly she symbolizes.

Cyprus - Cyprus Goddess with the lifted hands by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH4

Cyprus Goddess with the lifted hands

 

 

Around 3000 BC. we have a replacement of the Goddess Astarte with the Cross-like figurine of Pomos (left) a symbol also of fertility and characteristic of a matriarchal society.

 

Progressively the matriarchal period ends and we have the creation of various male Gods as the one that seats on a throne and has horns (right side behind). It is believed that he was the God Ares or some important king.

Cyprus - The Enthroned God Ares by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH6

The Enthroned God Ares

The enthroned God was likely the God Ares (Mars) or some king.

Next again The Horned God from Egkomi is portrayed who belongs in the later period of copper of the 12th century BC. It is considered that he was the God of Trade.

Cyprus - The Horned God from Egkomi .  by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH7

The Horned God from Engomi.

. The God of Trade.

Next is portrayed the the lion-like God with clearly Egyptian influence and which was found in ancient Amathounta.

Cyprus - Cyprus Lion-like God by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH8

Cyprus Lion-like God

 

The adoration of the Goddess Venus began from 3000 BC in Palaipafo without however proofs for a continuous adoration. The statue is the the Goddess Venus of Soloi first century BC that was symbol of Beauty and Love.

Cyprus - Cyprus  Aphrodite by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH9

Cyprus Aphrodite

The Goddess Aphrodite of Soloi Symbol of Beauty and Love.

Later we have the predominance of the twelve Olympian Gods. Simultaneously with the Goddess Venus we have the God Zeus (in the centre) as the Father of all Gods.

Cyprus - The God Jupiter or Zeus.  by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH10

The God Jupiter or Zeus

The father of all Gods.

 

 

Also we have Apollo Hylates (on the center) the God of light, music, and forests.

Cyprus - Apollo Hylates by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH11

Apollo Hylates

The God Apollo Hylates. God of light, music, and forests.

The adoration of the twelve Olympian Gods progressively was replaced by the Christian Religion. The Occupation of the Francs was a example of the predominance of Christianity in the island and Abbey of Bellapais( left below) was one of the most important monasteries.

 

Cyprus - Cyprus Abbey of Bellapais by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH12

Cyprus Abbey of Bellapais

The monastery in Abbey of Bellapais

Sample of Occidental influence in Cyprus The church of Virgin Mary of Asinou, building of 1099 constitutes an other example of predominance of Byzantine Empire in Cyprus.

Cyprus - Cyprus Asinou Church by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH13

Cyprus Asinou Church

The church of Virgin Mary of Asinou Example of predominance of Byzantine Empire in Cyprus

In the centre of the painting we have a modern Christian church (as an example the Church of Saint Andronikos in Liopetri and the cannon separates it from the Mosque of Hala Sultan Tekke in Larnaca, and assumed to be a reason of the segregation of the Christian and Moslem population.

Cyprus - Cyprus Church of Saint Andronikos by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH14

Cyprus Church of Saint Andronikos

The church of Saint Andronikos in Liopetri -Famagusta

Cyprus - Hala Sultan Tekke by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH15

Hala Sultan Tekke

The Mosque of Hala Sultan Tekke in Larnaca and the cannon that was always the characteristic in the history of Cyprus for many centuries.

This is the history of Cyprus that due to her various conquerors, had the occasion to learn and to worship many and different Gods, who however did not protect Cyprus neither from wars nor from unfairness.

 

Cyprus - Choirokoitia  by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH16

Choirokoitia

Original painting.
70cm X 70cm
Acrylic on Canvas and Pebbles

 

Nude - Aphrodite by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH17

Aphrodite

Original painting.
97 X70 cm
Oil on Canvas


Cyprus - Cyprus Beauty by Augusta Stylianou

No. CH18

Cyprus Beauty

Original painting.

50cm X 73cm
Acrylic on Canvas
and Peacock Tail Feather

 

Famagusta

Kyrenia

Choirokoitia

 

   


 

 

 

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