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An array of colorful sculptures resembling human figures by a local sculptor will soon be launched in Floriana

By on June 7, 2022 0

Local sculptor Antoine Farrugia launches an unprecedented work, this time with a colorful array of sculptures that resemble the human figure, created in 2017.

Made from Globigerina limestone from Malta, known as Franca In Maltese, the sculptures effortlessly capture elements of Maltese culture and will be on display at the Phoenecia Hotel in Floriana from June 13.

“These are abstract figures made of Franca, treated with color. You can’t just paint directly on rock, so I had to put layers of gypsum and varnish on first. For me, they are different creatures – creatures with different shapes and colors,” Farrugia told Lovin Malta.

“When I first created these characters, I thought about the different shapes found within humanity – some people are thin, some are thick, some are short, some are tall,” he said. he explains.

“A soft palette of pink skies just before dusk and the setting sun caressing the honey-colored limestone of the historic buildings, prehistoric temples, churches and fortifications of the Maltese island is an image that continues to captivate us,” said curator Charlene Vella at Lovin Malta. .

“It’s the local Lower Globigerina limestone that makes these images so Maltese so recognizable,” she said.

Franka has been used for buildings in Malta for thousands of years for the architecture of the islands which is almost entirely stone-oriented and is also particularly suited to sculpture due to its malleability.

Antoine Farrugia is a born sculptor, lives and works in Mqabba and exhibits a collection of colored limestone sculptures. Mqabba, a town in the Southern Region of Malta, is part of Maltas most important localities for its limestone quarries.

Maltese Franca would have been so highly valued by the British administration as the stone for the construction of the neoclassical Palace of St Michael and St George on the island of Corfu, Greece, built between 1819 and 1824 and commissioned by Sir Thomas Maitland, was imported Maltese stone.

Limestone is therefore important to Malta not only culturally, economically and historically, but it now serves as a primary medium for a local sculptor to express an abstract mode of expression.

“They are striking in the vivid palette with which they have been finished, sprayed onto a polished and highly reflective surface in most cases but textured in others. This leaves the viewer wondering what the material actually is, as Farrugia’s handling of limestone is particular,” reads the curator’s note.

“These sculptures in purple, red, green, pink and more, illuminate any environment they are in and are particularly suited to The Phenicia Malta spa which is bathed in light and has a play of light and shadows that changes the way these organic sculptures look invited,” it read.

“These abstract sculptures are deliberately untitled so that the viewer imagines them however they wish. Although they are seemingly abstract works, this fearless sculptor finds inspiration in nature and the human form, a point natural reference for many artists.

Farrugia held his first solo exhibition in 2003 and has participated in several solo and group exhibitions, having also traveled to China as a guest artist in July 2016.

His work has yet to cease to amaze with the way he masterfully carves stone into desired shapes.

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When Sasha (formerly known as Sasha Tas-Sigar) isn’t busy writing about environmental injustice, she’s likely fighting for women’s rights. Follow her @saaxhaa on Instagram and send her all things environment, art and women’s rights on [email protected]