Opening of the exhibition ‘Malta-Land of Sea’ at the BOZAR

Reference Number:  , Press Release Issue Date: Mar 14, 2017

On Thursday 16 February 2017, the Ambassador of Malta to the Kingdom of Belgium H.E. Ray Azzopardi accompanied the Minister for Justice, Culture and Local Government Dr Owen Bonnici to the inauguration of an exhibition, temporarily opened for the public at the Centre of Fine Arts Bozar, with the theme 'Malta-Land of Sea'. The exhibition is being held in collaboration with Heritage Malta, Malta Arts Council and the Centre of Fine Arts.

The exhibition ‘Malta-Land of Sea', opened with a speech by the exhibition director Ms. Sophie Lauwers. In her speech, Ms Lauwers commended the artworks displayed in this exhibition, for the first time at the Bozar, on the occasion of the Malta’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Ms Lauwers concluded her speech by thanking all the personnel involved in the organisation of the exhibition and invited the curator to deliver a speech and explain the artworks of exhibition.

Mr Sandro Debono explained that the title of the exhibition focuses on Malta’s characteristic features, particularly the sea surrounding the Maltese islands, which is displayed in over sixty pieces of art, as well as classical and contemporary objects pertaining to the Maltese cultural heritage. These works aid in promoting Malta and its people, portraying a territory of land and sea which relates to over twenty museums, cultural institutions, and different NGOs in Malta, in collaboration with the Malta Arts Council and Heritage Malta. Mr Debono explained that amongst several artworks being displayed, an exhibited piece of art reflects the perils faced by migrants when taking the risk of crossing the Mediterranean Sea by boat. This exhibition is also a remembrance of the 50th anniversary of Malta’s proposal on the Law of Sea territories to the United Nations Convention. Mr Debono concluded his speech by expressing appreciation towards all the personnel involved in the organisation of this is exhibition.

H.E. Ray Azzopardi expressed his appreciation towards the curator Mr Sandro Debono and commended the work sought in coordinating this exhibition. H.E. Ray Azzopardi stated that it is everyone’s mission to convey the significant message that the Mediterranean region plays an important role in fostering peace and prosperity in Europe. Ambassador Azzopardi emphasised on the importance of the common European heritage, which plays a significant role in charting the future of Europe. It is also important that Europeans behold the heritage that unites every nation to cooperatively shape the future of Europe. H.E. Ray Azzopardi introduced the Minister for Justice, Culture and Local Government, Dr Owen Bonnici to inaugurate this exhibition.

The Minister for Justice, Culture and Local Government remarked that the sea surrounding the Maltese islands unites everyone beyond any country’s borders. Dr Bonnici continued by recalling that Valletta will be the European Capital of Culture in 2018. Malta and its government are striving to provide additional opportunities to artists, even at international level. Dr Bonnici said that during the Presidency of Malta, Maltese artists were witnessing the government’s commitment in promoting arts and culture. Minister Bonnici urged the public to visit this exhibition, which will be opened between 17 February and 28 May 2017, to get a better understanding of Malta’s beliefs in voicing and embracing the European values. Dr Bonnici concluded by expressing appreciation towards all the personnel involved in the organisation of the exhibition for the benefit of the citizens on mainland Europe in the capital city of Belgium, Brussels.