Artist Andrew Borg’s fourth solo exhibition ‘Fragments’ will be the next hosted at the Phoenicia Hotel’s Palm Court Lounge, as part of the hotel’s artist in residence programme.
The exhibition is titled ‘Fragments’ for more than one reason. The first because it is a feature of one of the newer paintings – ‘Fragmented Landscape – Comino’ – which sees Borg execute a landscape and then painting over much of it, shrouding the extremities in white paint leaving only a fragment of it visible to the viewer. This same painting is symbolic of what to Borg is a portrayal of the increased erosion of what used to be a beautiful Malta; what we are being left with are small bits of a distant environmental and social past.
Another reason is because the paintings portray fragments from a whole, s chosen selection of a landscape, a castle, and such. And finally, fragments is also significant to the artist because of the duality that Borg is currently experiencing, since he is very much living between two Central Mediterranean islands: Malta and Sicily. To Borg, Sicily offers an escape, a hideaway that offers a completely different lifestyle and, as a result, a distinct state of mind, one that offers less chaos.
In the last few years, Andrew Borg has produced this collection of paintings that have been inspired by his personal experiences in Malta and Gozo’s coast and countryside, but also that of Sicily, especially those produced in the last few weeks, at the start of 2023. The Sicilian component is becoming ever more evident not just in Borg’s life, but also his oeuvre.
This collection of paintings is executed in oil on canvas and showcase landscapes that are painted from a particular vantage point that is a hallmark of Borg’s unique compositions often with vast skies, seas or fields. This is what makes the paintings very much recognisable as being by Andrew Borg, as is the square 60 x 60 cm format of canvas that he tends to favour.
One of the more recent square paintings is that of‘Aci Castello’ portraying the medieval fort in the province of Catania in Sicily in silhouette that towers over the viewer. This painting is also very representative for Andrew Borg, since this painting represents what Sicily is to him today: his castle away from a degenerated place we call Malta.
A number of smaller works on board will also be exhibited. These were prepared by the artist in preparation of larger works that showcase his process but which are independent works in their own right.
The exhibition is curated by Dr Charlene Vella and is open throughout the month of February at the Palm Court Lounge, The Phoenicia Malta.