Gozo Art in Public Spaces: Reflections and Connections, and Hagarna
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Two of the winning projects from the Art in Public Spaces competition have been inaugurated in Gozo, by Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Capital Projects Ian Borg.
Reflections and Connections – is a public staircase which has been adorned with mosaic in Ghajnsielem, and Hagarna – is a contemporary sculpture in Xaghra. Minister for Gozo Justyne Caruana was also present for the inauguration of the second project.
“I fully believe in the importance of giving public spaces to the people and I believe that these public spaces should have a pleasing aesthetic. I think art is one of those things that colour our lives, one of the best ways in which we can identify with our culture,” said Minister Ian Borg.
“The second edition of the competition `Art in Public Spaces,’ launched this year has seen a considerable number of applications being submitted and it is therefore a true satisfaction for me to see that both artists and local councils are willing to work together in favour of art and also for the benefit of our communities,” added the Minister.
He praised Gozitan mosaic artist Mary Portelli for the colourful staircase that has embellished a facility used both by residents and tourists and commended her for her creativity, remarking that “this staircase has breathed new life into this area.”The Minister also spoke about the art in Victor Agius’s ‘Hagarna’ sculpture that reflects the identity, history and cultural heritage of Xaghra, which has a strong identity that goes back to prehistoric times.
He also commended the use of poetry and performance, which bring to this work the Maltese language and folklore.
“As a Ministry, from 2017, we will have given almost 70 new or embellished public spaces to people and I am happy that we also had this initiative to promote the unique identity of these communities while giving space to the artists to express their vision,” said Minister Borg.
He concluded by saying, “our communities are close to our hearts and I feel that we represent them better when we create spaces that improve the quality of life and standard of living of the people.”