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The European Capital of Culture


This central concept of the Pafos2017 programme was developed based on a tradition spanning thousands of years when culture was enacted out in the open air and on the acknowledgement that there is a necessity for a new openness in our way of thinking, living and acting so that we may re-connect spaces and people in our region. The Open Air Factory guarantees a wider outreach into all parts of the region and community, mass exposure for the Pafos2017 activities and a shared space open to communication and collaboration.

The concept of the Open Air Factory is not just about the openness of space; it is about tolerance, acceptance, encouragement and inclusion of different cultures, ideas and beliefs. The Open Air Factory will encompass the entire district, both spatially and socially. It will have a decentralised structure with various sections, units, and workshops within the centre of Pafos, extending outwards to the district’s municipalities and smaller communities.


Pafos has always been at the crossroad of the Eastern Mediterranean and through its modern multicultural reality Pafos now aspires to be the first European Capital of Culture, which will link East and West.
Its geographical proximity to the Middle East as well as to the European mainland, positions Pafos to act as a link for cultural exchange.

Our motto also expresses the need for linking and bridging the differences between Pafos’ various groups of citizens: residents, visitors and migrants. Moreover, it stresses the importance of uniting the scattered parts of the city and transforming the entire district of Pafos into a common and a shared space for all its citizens – symbolically and physically.

Last but not least, it highlights the need for bridging the differences between the Greek and the Turkish Cypriot communities through various comprehensive and capacity building projects that Pafos2017 will develop along the way.

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