Louli Michaelidou

PhD Work

The Republic of Cyprus has been participating in the Venice Biennale of Art from 1968 until today, the island’s post-independence and post-colonial period. This research takes the Cyprus Pavilion in the Venice Biennale as a case study of the interrelationships between Greek Cypriot contemporary art, the socio-political dynamics on the island, and wider discourses on contemporary art. It specifically attempts to relate the form and content of Cypriot national participation to a charged recent history and to questions of cultural and national identity, as these emerged through the process of modernisation and were negotiated through the globalising artworld. The work examines how the Cypriot presence in this major international event has been infused with the dominant Hellenocentric and Eurocentric visions of Greek Cypriot identity, not only on an institutional level, but also with respect to artistic and textual content; it also examines whether these discourses were challenged across time, while keeping sight of the issues surrounding the notion of ‘national representation’, specifically for Cyprus as a nation-state and an island in conflict. This exploration attempts to illustrate a particular set of interactions between the ‘global’ context of art, contextualised here within the western institution of the Venice Biennale where Greek Cypriots sought recognition, and the ‘local’, reflecting the emerging picture of Cyprus as a modern, independent post-colonial society, striving to ‘reclaim’ its European cultural credentials. This study contributes to issues of post-1960s Cypriot contemporary art, a subject that remains theoretically and critically unexplored.

Info

  • Louli Michaelidou profile image
  • PhD

    School

    School of Fine Art

    Programme

    Curating Contemporary Art, 2007–2013

  • The Republic of Cyprus has been participating in the Venice Biennale of Art from 1968 until today, the island’s post-independence and post-colonial period. This research takes the Cyprus Pavilion in the Venice Biennale as a case study of the interrelationships between Greek Cypriot contemporary art, the socio-political dynamics on the island, and wider discourses on contemporary art. It specifically attempts to relate the form and content of Cypriot national participation to a charged recent history and to questions of cultural and national identity, as these emerged through the process of modernisation and were negotiated through the globalising artworld. The work examines how the Cypriot presence in this major international event has been infused with the dominant Hellenocentric and Eurocentric visions of Greek Cypriot identity, not only on an institutional level, but also with respect to artistic and textual content; it also examines whether these discourses were challenged across time, while keeping sight of the issues surrounding the notion of ‘national representation’, specifically for Cyprus as a nation-state and an island in conflict. This exploration attempts to illustrate a particular set of interactions between the ‘global’ context of art, contextualised here within the western institution of the Venice Biennale where Greek Cypriots sought recognition, and the ‘local’, reflecting the emerging picture of Cyprus as a modern, independent post-colonial society, striving to ‘reclaim’ its European cultural credentials. This study contributes to issues of post-1960s Cypriot contemporary art, a subject that remains theoretically and critically unexplored.

  • Degrees

  • MSc, Social Psychology, London School of Economics and Political Science, 1996; Diploma, Etudes Francaises, Université Lyon 2, France, 1995; BA, Psychology, Indiana State University, USA, 1994
  • Experience

  • Cultural officer, Ministry of Education and Culture, Nicosia, Cyprus, 1999–present