As Malta’s first national space dedicated exclusively to contemporary art, MICAS aims to positively energise Malta’s cultural ecology. It will serve as a platform to showcase world-class contemporary art and visual culture through exhibitions, collection displays and installations, as well as a range of cultural activities and educational events. MICAS will play a pivotal role in Malta’s cultural development as an active player on the world stage, connecting communities and audiences whilst also promoting internationalism and cultural diplomacy.
Located in the former Ospizio site and the adjacent Ritirata in Floriana, currently undergoing restoration works led by the Restoration Directorate, MICAS is scheduled to open in 2021. IPO Studio, a Florence-based architecture firm specialising in civic architecture are designing the space, and will add another layer to the site’s rich history. The central concept is to bring together two key elements: the historic fabric and landscape of the fortifications with the functions of a contemporary art space. Giovanni Barbara’s iconic skew arch, known as the Arco Barbara, will be incorporated into the project, which overlooks the Msida part of Marsamxett Harbour.
MICAS will not only become a showcase for local contemporary artists, but it will also engage with international artists and institutions to present groundbreaking works by acclaimed names from all over the world. Swiss-born, New York-based artist Ugo Rondinone will be the first internationally renowned artist to collaborate with MICAS and is currently working on a series of installations created specifically for the site.
In October 2018, MICAS will be launched officially through a programme of events which will include the unveiling of Ugo Rondinone’s project, a series of talks about contemporary art with leading international and local experts in the field and an audio-visual exhibition that will explain the history of the Ospizio and its transformation into MICAS.
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 its galleries will be delivered in 2022. This project is part-financed by the European Union under the European Regional Development Fund – European Structural and Investment Funds 2014-2020.
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Photo Credit: IPOStudio