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A minute with...Yiannis Toumazis
Director of the Nicosia Municipal Arts Centre and the Pierides Foundation. Assistant professor at the School of Architecture, Fine and Applied Arts of Frederick University
Where do you live?
Aglantzia, opposite the university park with my beautiful Pentadaktylos view, and the constant roars of passing cars.
Best childhood memory?
1960s Saturday afternoons at my grandmother’s house and pervoli (citrus orchard) in Ayios Memnon, Famagusta. Heracles ice-cream parlour was just around the corner. Lemon and chocolate ice cream on a cone. Absolutely delicious!
Most frequented restaurant and absolute favourite dish?
Pantopoleio and Palia Ilektriki. I love lentils, moutzientra style, with yoghurt and lemon. In general, nothing too fancy, fish or meat for protein, salads, and good red wine.
What did you have for breakfast?
A banana and an orange.
Would you class yourself as a day or night person? What’s your idea of the perfect night/day out?
Definitely a day person: work, exercise, eat, drink, sleep.
Best book ever read?
Helene Hanff’s 84, Charing Cross Road, for its mystical approach to books.
Favourite film of all time?
Fanny and Alexander by Ingmar Bergmann, I still remember vividly the death scene. A classic masterpiece.
Favorite holiday destination? What’s your dream trip?
Each year’s destination is unique. Last year was Stockholm by the sea. Awesome. I’ d love to start my dream trip in Argentina, fly to Japan, then Australia and end it looking at the spectacular scenery of New Zealand.
What music are you listening to in the car at the moment?
Island of Lost Souls by Blondie, the ultimate new wave group of my youth.
What is always in your fridge?
Sprite zero, bananas, oranges, coffee, batteries.
Dream house: rural retreat or urban dwelling? Where would it be, what would it be like and why?
Hm… that’s a tough one. I would love a modernist house in the mountains with a swimming pool or one on a remote cape in a Greek island, but on the other hand, I love the city as well: A loft in New York, a high-rise flat in Chicago or a sleek wooden house in San Francisco.
If you could pick anyone at all (alive or dead) to go out for the evening with, who would it be?
Marcel Duchamp, the greatest artist of all time. I adore him… Everything we think today as contemporary, he did a century ago…
If the world is ending in 24 hours what would you do?
I’d take the car and drive, Thelma and Louise style.
What is your greatest fear?
That I’ll survive a catastrophic collision with a meteoroid from outer space.
Tell me a joke…
The troika was so impressed by our economic performance that they left the island, congratulating the nation for its prudence. We wished them the best of luck elsewhere and many happy returns.