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Valletta International Visual Arts Festival launched

Viva last year. Photo: Elisa von Brockdorff

Viva last year. Photo: Elisa von Brockdorff

The 2015 edition of the Valletta International Visual Arts (Viva) Festival was inaugurated this morning by Culture Minister Owen Bonnici and Viva artistic director Raphael Vella.

Dr Bonnici said a variety of local artists, both upcoming and seasoned, were working together and alongside international artists.

Dr Vella added that this year, Viva was more comprehensive and more inclusive.

“We have a stronger emphasis on communities in Valletta, with films in residential buildings and exhibitions that come to terms with the realities of people's everyday lives. We also have a more expansive educational and outreach programme, which involves people from different sectors more directly in the development of knowledge.”

Exhibitions include the ‘Culture of Ageing’, a multi-faceted project which focuses on ageing, ‘Good walls make good neighbours’ which focuses on public and private spaces, and a collective video art exhibition about Palestine.

Divergent Thinkers, a collective made up of young local artists and which is part of the Empowerment Programme of Aġenzija Żgħażagħ, now in its fourth edition, will again be incorporated within the programme.

Viva also includes art installations such as ‘Position of Opposition (Hands Down)’ by local artist Aaron Bezzina, as well as‘unLOCK’, an installation created by inmates at the Corradino Correctional Facility and coordinated by Pierre Mifsud.

Events will be held at different locations around Valletta including Misraħ ir-Repubblika, St James Cavalier, Camarata Buildings, Melita Street and the Malta School of Art.

The second edition of the Curatorial School, which will run at the University of Malta – Valletta Campus from Monday to September 4, features an array of international professionals from the curatorial-arts industry who will be delivering talks and workshops throughout the week. The lecture programme is aimed at academics and students hailing from arts-related fields of study.

This morning’s launch was held at Heritage Malta in Melita Street, Valletta, where there is one of the exhibitions, Beltin by Zvezdan Reljic.

Viva will open for the public on August 31 and some exhibitions will remain open until November 6.

VIVA is co-organised by Fondazzjoni Kreattività, the Valletta 2018 Foundation, Arts Council Malta and Aġenzija Żgħażagħ.

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