As part of its Cultural Programme, the Valletta Cultural Agency is pleased to present an exhibition displaying a selection of recent works by acclaimed figurative artist Patrick Dalli. Taking place between the 4th of December 2021 and the 9th of January 2022 at the Gran Salon of the Museum of Archaeology in Republic Street, Valletta, The Journey showcases no fewer than 34 paintings, including a bozzetto, centered on the artist’s ongoing exploration of the human body.
Often dubbed as ‘Master of the Nude’, Dalli does not intend to evoke sensual and sexual qualities in his depictions but rather concentrates on the beauty and sensitivity of the nude human body. The venue’s Baroque splendor – including richly painted frescoes, exquisite arabesque cycles, a musicians’ gallery, and wooden beamed ceiling – will serve as the backdrop for this exhibition.
The artist states that nudity still is a revolutionary detonator even though it has been present in art for just about as long as humans have been creating it.
Born in Malta in 1955, Dalli was primarily interested mainly in landscape, still life, and portraiture. In 1995, he started formal training under the tutorship of Anton Calleja (b.1955-) exercising mainly in the study of the human figure. It is in these very active years that Dalli concentrated his practice on the nude. In the following years, together with other fellow artists, Dalli practiced intensely in live sessions and participated in collective exhibitions in Malta and abroad, exhibiting nudes, landscapes, and still-life paintings.
His works were exhibited at St James Cavalier (2010), the Malta Fine Arts Museum (2010), Palazzo Collicola, Spoleto, Italy (2015) and Il-Kamra ta’ Fuq (2021).
Dalli’s publications include Dermografie, Gutenburg Press 2015; the human figure, Gutenburg Press 2010; Nudes, Midesea Books 2008 and 2004 and The Human Figure 2002.
The Catalogue for this exhibition, with an introduction penned by Prof. Vittorio Sgarbi and a critical essay written by Dr. Charlene Vella, is published by La Nave di Teseo, under the Valletta Cultural Agency’s copyright. The catalogue is curated by Elisabetta Sgarbi, Publisher of La Nave di Teseo. The exhibition is coordinated by Valerio Ballotta (GBK Malta Ltd), together with Stefano Losani and Elisabetta Sgarbi.
Based on the legacy of the Valletta 2018 Foundation, the Valletta Cultural Agency seeks to promote the capital’s cultural and artistic heritage through the creation of an annual programme of events that are accessible to all.