1991 European Museum of the Year Award
Since 1989 the Museum operates aiming to bring the public
of Cyprus first -and also foreign visitors -close to the
history and the civilisation of our country. With its
opening in 1989 Cyprus "acquired its first modern
Museum and an actual opportunity to escape from the 'canopy'
of archaeology that kept the progress of Museumology many
years back." In 1991 the Committee for the European
Museum of the Year Award, which operates under the wing
of the European Council, used the above words in to honour
the Museum, declaring it European Museum of the Year 1991.
It is a distinction that many large and wealthy museums
have not yet managed to receive and makes Cyprus known
in the field of Museumology throughout Europe for the
first time. At the same time, if the Museum is to preserve
this distinction it has to continue its pioneering activities.
"The Museums that aim
to be embraced by the public must be more than just
an area where there are many objects inside showcases.
They must also be an area full of ideas".
(Excerpt from the book: Museums Masters, Alexander E.,
Nashville, 1983, p. 289).
"It is a Museum with style,
with wit, with cultural balance, and -above all -with
a keen sense for the public's needs and preferences".
(Kenneth Hudson, excerpt from the "EMYA" magazine
of the Committee for the European Museum of the Year,
"The Museum is a non-profit
organisation in the service of society and its development,
it is open to the public and it enhances itself, it
preserves, it protects, it researches, it trains and
educates, and it exhibits -for the purposes of study,
education, and sensitisation -materials and testimonies
for the human being and its environment".
(Excerpt from the Articles of Association
of ICOM (International Council of Museums))
In the years between 1984 and 1988, having this paragraph
of ICOM's Article of Association as an axis, appropriate
actions were taken so as to recondition the building,
making known and promoting to the public the need and
importance of creating the Historical Museum of Nicosia
and gathering collections and representative items.
The Museum's donators are many and the donations continue
Ever since the day the Museum opened,
its collections have tripled. This is mainly due to
donations offered to the Museum by the Leventis Foundation,
the Association of Friends of the Museum, and also of
more than 150 other donators. As some of the Museum's
first donators, a reference must be made to the Mayor
Mr. Lellos Demetriades and also the Leventis Foundation,
as well as the Association of the Museum's Friends.
With every donation the Donator receives a certificate
for his donation; special ceremonies take place in regular
time intervals, in which each donator receives an honorary
diploma and a coin bearing the Museum's and the Municipality's
emblems. Moreover, an important number of collectors
lend items from their collections, after an agreement
with the Museum. All the items that are donated, bought
or borrowed, are recorded and classified according to
the "ANTIKEIMENO" program so as to make their
classification easier, as well as making it easier for
every interested party and researcher. The Museum today
presents significant and complete -both in terms of
specimen and quality -collections (of the Museum), such
as the collections of Mediterranean pottery, embroideries
and laces, textiles, silver and gold smithery of modern
times, Nicosia's mapping, and many others. Also important
is the collection of old and modern photographs of Nicosia.
All these photographs are recorded and classified through
the "MATI" program and -in a little while
-they will be available to the public and to researchers.