Famagusta, Cyprus : a third way in cultural heritage
Date of Issue2015
School of Art, Design and Media
The forty-year neglect of Famagusta’s heritage is the result of, among other things, a crevice in the overarching, internationally endorsed system that established, and now maintains, the universal framework for heritage assets. The unresolved political contestation in Cyprus has led not only to the serious decay of Famagusta’s heritage assets, but also to the difficulty in any potential international effort to recognize, develop, conserve, and sustain its heritage. Crucial questions arise: How can Cultural Heritage in politically unstable and contested territories be maintained? More specifically, is there a way to produce a sustainable and efficient management and utilization strategy for Famagusta’s heritage? In this study I identify the gaps and caveats created by the ‘international system’ through an analysis and assessment of the concept of Cultural Heritage. That established, I propose two complementary approaches that offer an alternative way, a third way, for the future feasibility of Famagusta’s heritage sites. This proposal then falls into, and utilizes, two further interacting categories: a legal framework aimed at assessing Famagusta’s current condition within the context of Transitional Justice (to empower stakeholders to initiate proactive schemes to develop its heritage); and secondly a management strategy called Public-Private-Partnership (PPP), founded on an economic model, to meet the legal, echnical and conceptual requirements of the former. At the core of this study, I establish an alternative method, grounded on economic sustainability and Transitional Justice, which can serve as a way for the development of heritage assets in Famagusta as opposed to mere maintenance. This method, I maintain, rests on the hitherto untapped potential of empowering the private entrepreneurial sector in the development and conservation of Cultural Heritage and on the facilitation of the civil society throughout the process via a shift in the fundamental conceptualization of what Cultural Heritage is.
DRNTU::Visual arts and music::General