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Talk on Caravaggio’s Maltese period

The Beheading of St John, Caravaggio’s masterpiece at St John’s Co-Cathedral, Valletta.The Beheading of St John, Caravaggio’s masterpiece at St John’s Co-Cathedral, Valletta.

‘Caravaggio’s Malta’ is the title of a talk that Keith Sciberras, head of the University of Malta’s Department of History of Art, will deliver at the Din l-Art Ħelwa premises in Valletta, today.

In July 1607, the fugitive Italian artist Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio found refuge in Malta for what became a milestone period in his life – from his turbulent escape from Papal Rome to his untimely death in 1610. It was a period when Caravaggio, while yearning to return to Rome, produced some outstanding masterpieces. Caravaggio’s Maltese period was a defining moment for his final style. Against all odds, the artist secured a context which could have eased a safe return to Rome.

During the lecture, Prof. Sciberras will discuss the evidence of his Maltese stay and will raise questions about his motives for coming to the island. He will identify his protectors and patrons and discuss humanism and chivalry. He will also place in context his crime, which ultimately led to his disgrace and daring escape to Sicily.

The talk will be delivered at Judge M. Caruana Curran Hall, Din l-Art Ħelwa, 133, Melita Street, Valletta, today at 6.30pm. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. Admission is free of charge but donations will be appreciated. For more details, call 2122 0358 or visit http://dinlarthelwa.org.

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