Monday, 8 December 2014

7. The Maltese Festival(Part One)

A few months ago, we flew to Sliema, Malta for a three-day street-art festival. We should say up front that Malta is not exactly one of our favourite places. The beaches are the worst we've ever seen - a few grains of wind-blown sand on top of pock-holed rock. Transportation is terrible - traffic jams go on forever and buses may pass you by because they're already full-up. Restaurants are expensive and your reward for the extra cost is an inordinately long wait for service. Meanwhile, the island-nation is rapidly becoming a Russian enclave.

But, they say you have to suffer for your art. We guess that applies to art fans as well as artists. The festival, which was poorly organized and didn't really take off until the last day, at least featured some exceptionally good and unique street art. Also the blue sea lent a colourful backdrop to some of the artwork, as well as an unofficial theme to the festival: sea creatures and birds. Even better, the best murals from the inaugural festival in 2013 were preserved, so it was like seeing two-years of festivals in one.

This week we're going to focus on our favourites from 2013. Next post we'll look at the best of 2014.

Telmo Miel is the synthesized name of two Dutch street artists who usually paint together - Telmo Pieper and Miel Krutzmann. They like to paint big and they like to paint bold. And with two murals held over on the Sliema waterfront promenade, they're our kings of the 2013 festival.

Sea Puppy is the alter ego of street artist Christian de Sousa Jensen. He's originally from Denmark but now lives in Malta.

Widdershins, which translates to "in a direction different to the usual" is the name used by Malta's Nel Pace. As we've mentioned before, we like artists who aren't afraid to tackle social issues.

Another Maltese artist is Twitch. He's been practicing his craft for over 20 years and this is his take on Odysseus and the Cyclops. We like the way Odysseus' hand is about to crush a local resident.

Sofles from Australia and Mr. Dheo from Portugal combined on this artwork, so we're not sure if the unfortunate chap below is drowning in the Atlantic or being munched by a Great White down under.

Some artists seem to do equally well regardless of the size or type of canvas. Local Justink's (aka Justin Bonnici) is both a street artist and tattoo master.

We haven't been able yet to track down the name of the highly talented artist behind the colourful portrait below - but we're still looking.

Ditto for the artist behind this one:

That's it for Sliema, 2013. In our next post we'll hop into our time machine and leap forward to 2014.

1 comment:

  1. Can I find out who is the creator of the graffiti..thanks