And with Valletta 2018 finally set to launch this coming weekend, one of Malta’s foremost musicians and cultural critics Mario Vella, the lead singer of Brikkuni, has spoken out on the busy year of events for what he said would be the last time.
Vella noted some of the most common complaints against the foundation, namely, no new artistic spaces, no new educational drive, no appropriate changes to ‘draconian’ laws made, as well as a whole lot of talk coming from the officials at the Valletta 2018 Foundation.
Many people who saw his post online couldn’t help but agree, seeing as they had been personally affected by the foundation and the direction it took this major cultural event.
And there will also some people that raised some interesting and nuanced points in response as well.
Malta’s capital city has been preparing for this year-long celebration of Maltese art and culture for about five years now. Investments, projects, exhibitions, concerts – the city has seen it all happen over the last half decade.
However, many artists and cultural operators from the Maltese scene have been pointing out for years what they thought were the failures of the organisation running the whole show – the Valletta 2018 Foundation.
There have been cries of misguided projects, allegations of a lack of support for many artists, and a general sense that the project is a bit of a facade for the lack of cultural investment in Malta.
And since we’ve made it to 2018, the critiques have not stopped. The recently opened Is-Suq tal-Belt, which was widely praised by Maltese society in general, came under fire from many within the artistic community.
Only time will tell if the investments and direction that the Valletta 2018 Foundation, with Chairman Jason Micallef at the helm, has taken Malta is the correct one. Until then, sit back and enjoy the year-long show.
Featured photo by Lindsey Bahia Pictures