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The Cyprus Museum: Past, Present and Future

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The Cyprus High Commission

13 St. James’s Square

SW1Y 4LB

United Kingdom

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The High Commission of the Republic of Cyprus & UCL Institute of Archaeology cordially invite you to the lecture "The Cyprus Museum: Past, Present and Future" by Dr Despina Pilides, Ph.D., FSA, Curator of Antiquities, Department of Antiquities, Cyprus. The lecture will inaugurate the temporary photography exhibition “Archaeological Treasures of the Cyprus Museum”.

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Despina Pilides, Ph.D., FSA

Curator of Antiquities, Department of Antiquities, Cyprus

Dr Despina Pilides studied Archaeology at the Institute of Archaeology, London. Her doctoral thesis at University College London focused on the Handmade Burnished Wares of the Late Bronze Age in Cyprus. She subsequently continued her research with publications on the utilitarian pottery of the Cypriot Late Bronze Age.

She joined the Department of Antiquities, Cyprus in 1995 and is now Curator of Antiquities. She was Acting Director of the Department of Antiquities in 2012-13.

From 1996 to 2010, she excavated a multi-period site on the Hill of Agios Georgios in Nicosia, an extensive settlement that provided documentation for various periods of the city’s history. She secured funding and created a site museum and educational centre on the Hill of Agios Georgios, while the archaeological site is currently being landscaped in order to be made accessible to the public. She also conducted excavations at the Podocataro Bastion, on the Venetian Walls of Nicosia. Since 2013, she has been directing a new project in the region of Agios Sozomenos, at the centre of the island. This new project involves field survey using new technologies and problem-oriented excavation, aiming at an investigation of the socio-economic organisation of the island in the Late Bronze Age.

As Curator of Antiquities, Dr Pilides is responsible for the island’s museums; she promotes the renovation of museums, the creation of new ones and the organisation of periodical exhibitions. A major part of her work involves the digitisation of collections, sites and monuments through several EU or other co-funded projects. In addition, she coordinates research projects and she is actively involved in the fight against illicit trafficking of cultural objects. She is also responsible for the protection of Underwater Archaeology, currently promoting the development of a specialised unit, with external and governmental funding.

Dr Pilides has secured a number of fellowships for her research projects; she was external PhD examiner at La Trobe University and the University of Queensland, in Australia and Vrije Universiteit Brussel, in Belgium. She is a member of the Editorial Board of the monograph series Studies in Mediterranean Archaeology. In 2010, she was elected Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London.

She was President of ICOMOS Cyprus National Committee, and she is currently the President of the Committee for Export Licenses of Archaeological materials, President of the ICOM National Committee, and President of the National Committee for the Fight Against Illicit Trafficking of Cultural Objects. She also participates as an expert in UNESCO and EU Committees regarding the issue of illicit trafficking of cultural objects, as well as about issues concerning the management of museums. She was President of the Association of Cypriot Archaeologists from 2009-2018.

She has organised and participated in many conferences and exhibitions, and she has been an invited speaker in many universities around the world. She is the author of four monographs and editor of several volumes, including exhibition catalogues in different languages and conference proceedings. She has also contributed to numerous chapters and articles in edited volumes and scientific journals.


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The Cyprus High Commission

13 St. James’s Square

SW1Y 4LB

United Kingdom

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