Cultural village of lemba _ HONORABLE MENTION

Cultural Village of Lemba: Thresholds of creativity

Honorable Mention at architectural competition for the creation of the cultural village of Lemba, Cyprus


Project Team:

_ Micromega Architecture & Strategies, Athens Greece

 (Project Team: Alexandros Zomas, Mara Papavasileiou, Marianthi Papaggelopoulou)

_ Near Architecture, Athens Greece

(Fabiano Micocci)


Program distribution: Art Education Centre, guesthouse and Administration

The Art Education Centre is located on the south plot. As a tribute to the artist Stass Paraskos, the proposal keeps the southern entrance through the Great Wall of Artists. Situated across the main square, the entrance leads to the workshops through the Square of the Artists, which highlights the relation between new and existing pieces of art. The workshops are located on two levels, while an elevated plaza offers unobstructed views to the village and the sea. An outdoor linear path that meanders between new and existing buildings connects the various uses of the site. Further above, one finds the Administration building, white the Studen Guesthouse is situated in direct relation to the Archaeological Space.

Program distribution: Artists’ Residencies

The Artists’ Residencies are situated in the northern plot, in order to enhance a second core in the Lempa village, blending creativity and exhibitions. Our design frames the views to the landscape through the intermediate space, while the artists workshops function both as studios and exhibition spaces.

The specificity of the site lies in the light slopes: a linear walk between existing shells and new construction is developed following this altimetry. Each laboratory is accompanied by an open, intermediate space of exchange and contemplation. There, the view to the landscape, and often to the sea, is framed, and so is highlighted the importance of the cultural landscape of the village and the area. Scattered among the laboratories, we find the artists’ residencies in two levels. The larger rooms are located in new buildings, while the smaller ones are located in the existing shells. Each residence unit has a close relation to a studio space. The promenade within the Residency gains in complexity, as the exhibition spaces interchange with the intermetdiate courtyards and differents points of perspective are unveiled.

The influence of the place

The proposal for the Cultural Village is situated within the rural fabric of Lemba Village, just a few km away from Paphos, Cyprus. The scale of the surrounding area and its proximity to the natural environment provides living conditions that support creativity, both for the interested artists and the local community. The proposal takes into consideration the particular climatic conditions of the place, which favor the habitation of the intermediate areas, i.e. the semi-open space, where most social and cultural activities will take place. This spatial quality prevails in the existing settlement and inspires the proposal.

Dynamic link between old and new shells

New structures are designed in a complementary relationship to the existing ones:  the intermediate space acts as the join between them. The project aims to maximize the relationship between the closed and semi-open spaces: both laboratories and the living units are in direct correlation with a covered outdoor area, as this is where these activities take place during mpst of the year. The transitional in-between spaces therefore constitute the social nucleus, which facilitate daily contact and exchange between visitors and students.

Adaptation to landscape

The proposal, in particular those parts of the northern site where we find the Art Residencies, lay organically on the ground or are suspended above it. We believe that the influence of the landscape is a factor that reflects the development of the settlement, on which we adapt.