Walk around the streets of Valletta and explore the rich local contemporary art being exhibited in some of Malta’s finest art spaces.
Amid the ongoing pandemic, we have collectively changed the way we spend our free time. The traditional idea of an event has been completely turned on its head. With big groups of people restricted from meeting each other, people have had to adapt to a new method of planning a day or evening out, often being left disappointed at not having many options of what can be done.
With the famous Valletta nightlife on pause, some people have discovered an enriching new interest. Exhibition Hopping. Walking from one arts space to the next, it is a relaxing way to wander around and re-discover the quirky streets of Valletta, while simultaneously finding a creative escape from normality. A highly rewarding learning experience, where you can appreciate and be inspired by the original and expressive contemporary work of art being exhibited.
Each space has its own story, often featuring new artists under one roof to portray a particular theme. They are typically free to enter and considered a safe activity since they attract fewer visitors at one time. Although, there may be several art pieces to see, you will not take an extended period inside either. And if you are lucky, the artists themselves may be on hand to discuss and answer any questions that you may have about their art. Oh, and if you looking for a new art piece for your home, you are probably going to see something you would like to purchase too!
So, if you are looking to have an adventure this weekend with your significant other or purely want to find something different to do with a friend, then let us help plan your first exhibition hop. In Valletta alone, there are no less than six exhibitions, with several more planned for March.
The following art exhibitions are currently open for visitors and we are sure they will gladly encourage you to go on the hop.
A collective exhibition by Gabriel Buttigieg, Charles Balzan and Paul Scerri.
Until 24th February: Monday - Sunday 10am - 6pm
Darkness at Noon is the archetypal uncanny moment: frighteningly strange and defined by an occurrence that violently alters the patterns of nature. Responding to this motif, each artist has created a collection which, while radically different in terms of form and style, explores the same sphere of human experience.
Understanding the compulsions that shape us as 21st century creatures lead to a fuller expression of our humanity and a widened sense of empathy and conscientiousness which breaks down the walls of otherness.
At its most basic, Darkness at Noon aims to underscore the common structures which unite us in a natural way by breaking down the artificially perceived barriers of essential separation, be they COVID induced or ingrained into the workings of our brains, our concepts and our society.
A collective exhibition by artists Rachel Bowman, Emma Fsadni, Monique Gatt, Kimberly Vella and Jade Zammit.
Until 20th February: Tuesday - Saturday 11:30am - 2pm & 4pm – 7pm; Sunday- 12pm - 4pm
An all-female show, the works are not solely connected by the artists’ gender, but by their individual dynamic approach to the Maltese arts scene. These passionate artists - all aged thirty years and under - in their formative years on the gallery circuit are eager to show the public what’s to be expected of the new generation of contemporary painters and fine art illustrators.
The exhibition hopes to live up to its title - current works by current names, with an underlying emphasis on their collective electricity.
Artists: Shaun Grech, Raphael Vella, Paul Portelli, Martin Bonnici
Curator: Raphael Vella
Until 28th February: Monday Closed; Tuesday - Friday 9am – 9pm; Saturday - Sunday 10am – 9pm
Exploring the space between dehumanization, humiliation and nation through a geopolitical and historical perspective.
Dehumaneation is an exhibition that will combine paintings, film, an installation, narratives, and critical debate to explore these complex concepts. Curated by Prof. Raphael Vella and using Dehumaneation as an invented word, concept and probe, the artists will bring these three concepts together (Dehumanization, Humiliation and Nation) to address a range of instances and manifestations of this intersectional space.
This project is unashamedly political and seeks to open a space for active critical reflection and debate on a range of thorny issues while envisioning sites of critical resistance within the artistic space.
Artist: Maria Borg
Until 21st February: Thursday – Sunday 10.30am – 4pm
There is a comfort in objects: those that are familiar, those that we encounter every day. Those objects provide us with a sense of mental equilibrium, because they don’t change. Because they are part of our routine, they are us.
This exhibition focuses on painting objects. The paintings obsess over texture; the softness of the fabric and the heaviness of the body that inhabited them. They tease by evoking a presence that interacted with the subject that is no longer there. This absence lends the objects a heavy aura which suggests that they will be around for much longer than we will.
Until 7th March: Monday Closed; Tuesday - Friday 9am – 9pm; Saturday - Sunday 10am – 9pm
As part of an ongoing journal about living in the age of the Covid-19 pandemic, this exhibition, documents, through one’s lens, the daily occurrences and experiences around living in quarantine and/or with the social distancing directives.
With over 140 entries by the general public, the project was well received, with the most expressive submissions selected.
Artists: Alexandra Aquilina, Kevin Attard, Isabelle Borg, Gabriel Buttigieg, Kane Cali, Charlene Galea, Christian Muscat, George Muscat, Matthew Pandolfino, Marcel Pommer, Kim Sammut, Suzanna Scott, Ritty Tacsum & Jenna Tilley
Curator: Lisa Gwen
Until 21 March 2021: Monday Closed; Tuesday - Friday 9am – 9pm; Saturday - Sunday 10am - 9pm
The work is simply a crude and unequivocal portrayal of the sinuosity of a (female) body in space, powerfully modelled and accentuated through light and shade. This is precisely how and why was conceived, as an overdue attempt to both celebrate and demystify the female form, by overtly choosing to portray the vagina in literal, or abstracted terms, or even by connotation.
The multi-media visual exhibition will be accompanied by ancillary events, such as talks and screenings which shall both foster and encourage debate and dialogue on, and surrounding the subject.
Artist: Madeleine Fenwick
Until 1st March: Monday – Sunday 08:00am – 10:30pm
Madeleine’s experience of living in the city of Valletta for the last 6 years has influenced her greatly. The pure architecture of the city and the combination of its natural rock and the man-hewn order laid into it, is a source of much inspiration as can be witnessed in her drawings.
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