Art will never tell you what to do but it has an uncanny ability to force ourselves to re-examine the world around us and sometimes even take action.
One Maltese artist, Nathan Portelli, is doing just that, with his recent work shines a light on the ugly side of the country.
Money is a central theme to the works. In one it devours a traditional Maltese church, not much unlike a series of shocking images that emerged of a St Julian’s residence.
With money-hungry developers spreading faster than COVID-19, it’s easy to see where Portelli’s inspiration comes from.
“There is a more dangerous virus among us and it is killing our identity. It is defacing our heritage by the second. I guess that is what my current work is trying to manifest,” Portelli told Lovin Malta.
Political partisanship is also laid bare, in one work aptly titled ‘Prosit Ministru’, a reference to the slew of comments that flood politicians’ social media posts.
“My paintings simply capture what I see. I leave the rest to the viewer to reflect on what he sees,” he continued.
Politics undoubtedly underscores his work, like much of Malta, with climate change and environmental destruction also a key theme.
You can check out the rest of Portelli’s work over here.
What do you think of the work? Comment below