Folk Arts Institute

Folk Arts Institute has been established with the funding of USAID and UNDP through UNOPS. The institute is a non-profit organization which belongs to the Folk Arts Foundation. The aim of the institute is not only to produce, display and sell hand crafts using colors, patterns and motifs authentic to Cyprus, but also to give courses in handcrafts to revive this part of the Cyprus culture.

Hand-made furniture and boxes, hand waived clothes, traditional costumes and baskets that occupy a unique place among traditional handcrafts are produced using traditional methods of Cyprus.

The institute is located in the historical site of Nicosia, Walled City, next to the Selimiye (Agia Sophia) Mosque and the restored building hosting the institute displays the beautiful characteristics of traditional British architecture. The institute has workshops and a showroom where handcrafts are produced and displayed.

Folk Arts Institute has attracted the attention of mass public, being a non-profit civil society organization which has succeeded to be economically self-sufficient since 2000. The institute is known as an organization that seeks to revive traditional handcrafting; a field that possesses importance and necessity for the island.

The organization is administrated by volunteers and within the body there are 8 professional personnel together with 17 housewives coming from rural settlements. With the aim of revitalizing handcrafting, vocational training courses have been given to approximately 500 people in the last three years.

Traditional production techniques are being used in the institute. Motifs, colors and figures kept alive for centuries are being used on merchandise being produced based on authentic traditional ones. The institute aims to produce commodities that could be used for both decorative purposes and for functions other than their initial uses.

Another field the institute emphasizes on is the production of souvenirs that reflect the local characteristics of the island. A great deal of effort is being put in to increase the variety of the production of these handmade miniature souvenirs which possess authentic colors and motifs.


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