Malta International Contemporary Art Space (MICAS) is intended to strengthen Malta’s cultural infrastructure by providing a platform for contemporary art and internationalisation. With its launch, Malta is about to take a great step forward and become a proactive player in the contemporary art world.
Scheduled to open in 2022, MICAS will not only become a showcase for local contemporary artists but will also engage with international institutions to present groundbreaking works by acclaimed artists from all over the world.
MICAS aims to positively energise Malta’s cultural ecology and impact that of the Euro-Mediterranean region it inhabits. The MICAS mission is to be an advocate of contemporary art by raising public awareness to the significance of the visual arts in contemporary life, and by bringing to the forefront the way art and artists help mediate and interpret the world we live in.
MICAS is a Government of Malta infrastructural legacy project for the Culture and the Arts sector. MICAS will be realised through state funded restoration of historical fortifications and is a EU co-funded project that will deliver the MICAS internal galleries through the European Regional Development Fund in 2022.
Floriana’s Balzunetta district will soon be hosting Malta’s new contemporary art space, which will be realised through the repurposing of the sites of the Old Ospizio and the Ritirata within the magnificent Floriana Lines of fortifications overlooking Marsamxett harbour.
The Micas project footprint extends further down along the Polverista curtain, to the La Vittoria bastion, and the adjacent Ritirata and San Salvatore Counterguard with its spectacular arcone, or skew arch.
An entrepreneur by profession, Phyllis Muscat has established herself as one of Malta’s leading administrators, both in the public and private sector.
In 2015, Phyllis successfully led the Taskforce of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). As Head of the Taskforce, Phyllis was entrusted by the Government of Malta, to coordinate the administrative and logistical arrangements for all events. She now retains the position of Director on the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council (CWEIC) Advisory Board. She also serves as Chairperson for the Coordinating Board for Cultural Projects (CBCP).
Throughout her professional career in the private sector, Phyllis set up several businesses within the health and wellness sector. She was also the first woman in Malta to be appointed Chairperson of a leading media house, ONE Group. Phyllis also served on the executive committee of the Maltese-American Chamber of Commerce, the Malta Association of Women in Business and Action for Breast Cancer Foundation and co-founded the European Confederation of Professional Beauticians and Cosmeticians (CEPEC) and the Malta Association of Beauty-Therapists (MABT).
Francis Sultana creates interiors for the world’s most prominent art collectors. Francis’s studio is based in London in the same building as David Gill Gallery, of which Francis is Artistic Director. Known for his unique ability to merge private residences with large-scale visual art, sculpture and design, Francis’s studio works across Europe, Asia and USA. Alongside interior projects, Francis produces collections of bespoke and limited edition furniture and textiles.
Featured regularly in Architectural Digest's prestigious AD100, Francis is cited as one of Wallpaper’s Top 20 Interior Designers. He is listed on House & Garden's Top 100 and AD France’s Top Interior Designers annual list. Not only are his properties regularly featured in magazines all over the world, but Francis was the only British-based designer invited to join AD Collections 2017 in Paris.
Francis Sultana supports the Malta Arts Council in particular Malta's pavilion at the Venice Biennale. An Ambassador of Culture for Malta, Francis promotes Malta's art and cultural agenda around the world. He was co-founder of the Design Fund for the V&A and now sits on the International Council for the museum and also sits on the International Council for the Design Museum.
Georgina Portelli is a specialist in concept formation, language representation and multilingualism, and holds a PhD (Psych) from the University of London. She has worked extensively in the education, communications and concept development fields as well as in the cultural and creative sector as a researcher, editor and policy advisor. As an independent curator, she has a special interest in interactive art, memory and negotiated boundaries of the self, radical otherness and the politics of displacement. Her current work focuses on diaspora and memory studies, culture for social inclusion, sponsorship for the arts, and the forging of creative partnerships between art, science and other disciplines.
Georgina is presently chair of the Creativity Trust Fund and is a board member of Fondazzjoni Kreattività at Spazju Kreattiv. A passionate champion of creativity and contemporary art, she is a founding member of ‘ISTRA’ a contemporary art and research foundation where she is co-chair for research.
Ruth Bianco is a multidisciplinary artist who creates and leads projects in contemporary fine art contexts with a research specialism in transboundary movements, geo-political space and territories. Ruth has exhibited extensively and travelled to participate in significant exhibitions including Femme d’Europe, Saint-Tropez; Dans la Nuit des Images, Paris; Breakthrough, The Hague. Her editioned work If I Just Turn and Run is in the Special Archive Collections of Tate Britain London, Victoria & Albert Museum London, and Royal College of Art London.
Ruth has an MA and PhD in Fine Art from the University for the Creative Arts, Kent, UK; lectures in contemporary art practice, visual culture and architecture within the Built Environment Faculty at the University of Malta; and directs Art-in-Architecture research and exhibition programmes. She curates exhibitions independently and coordinates international artist collaborations, and has taught and lectured in the United Kingdom and other European Universities. She has a keen interest in internationalism, cultural geography and art diplomacy with a focus on the role of soft power, artistic mediation and connective space. Ruth has led the consultancy for MICAS and European funding from 2013 and is board member of the National Commission for UNESCO.