FILFLA STUDIO

This space has been quiet for a time (and it is likely to remain so for a while). Reason is, I have been working on ‘Filfla Studio’ – a project I am developing focusing on storytelling through the medium of digital/graphic art.

The first story ‘Filfla’ did well.

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It won the audience award at the Kinemastik International Short Film Festival and was selected in various other Festival including the Valletta Film Festival, Encounters Film Festival, French Riviera Film Festival and was part of the of the European ArtHouse Cinema Day among others.

I’m looking forward to develop more stories, which will probably keep me busy for the next 3-5 years.

Follow Filfla Studio for more information

http://www.filfla.studio

Filfla

Filfla is a short animation that I have been working on for the past two years – ever since ‘what happens after the 1 minute of silence?’ exhibition ended.

It is a departure from my previous work as it is my first animation ever.

I am planning to finalize it by the end of 2018 and have it ready for 2019.

It will then be submitted to Festivals.

Keep tuned for more updates.

Debate: what comes after the 1 minute of silence?

what comes after the 1 minute of silence?’ presents a project that deals with the conse- quences of terrorism on communities in Europe. The exhibition is divided into two main parts: an art exhibition and a panel discussion.

Panel discussion:

25th January, Music Room, St James Cavalier Centre for Creativity, at 1900 hrs

Most acts of terrorism, particularly in the West, are typically followed by a period of social and political theatre where we remember the dead, make statements of condemnation and pledge to make changes that ensure there will not happen again.

The panel discussions aims to debate this phenomenon. The idea is to debate the renewed swell of terrorism and its possible causes, but also to question and analyse the response to this phenomenon in the west; both the immediate aftermath and in the long term.

In this environment of heightened risk, contemporary Western societies have been react- ing instinctually and predictably… Xenophobia, Islamophobia and racism are on the rise as are walls fences and calls for more borders. Is this inevitable? What should we expect in the coming decade and can anything be done to avoid a future marked by fear and suspicion?

Panel:

Mr Beat Schuler, UN Refugee Agency

Dr Arsalan Alshinawi, International Relations

Mr Teodor Reljic, Journalist

Moderator: Mr Mark Micallef

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debate

Maltatoday interview: Open minds and ears to the ground | Fabrizio Ellul

Teodor Reljic speaks to artist Fabrizio Ellul, whose newly-opened exhibition ‘What Comes After the 1 Minute of Silence’ will use digital drawings, video art and panel discussions to examine the consequences of terrorism in Europe

How did you hit upon the idea for the exhibition, and why is the ‘one minute silence’ your starting point?

This is my first solo exhibition in some eight years. It took some time to come up with a personal project. But it was also a good timescale to listen to what others were saying. There is so much information out there, and so easy to create information through social media platforms, that at times you forget to listen. Everyone seems to want to participate in conversations but very few are interested in taking the time to listen.

I want to make sure that I am putting forward a decent argument or at least something interesting.

For this exhibition, I am trying to understand what comes after that one minute of silence of grief and mourning. As my friend and artist, Caesar Attard once told me: “The role of the artist is not that of finding solutions but that of questioning.”

So, let us put this question out there and see what comes from it.

What kind of conversation do you think we need to have about terrorism in Malta, and how do you think local artists can adequately address the phenomenon in a way that’s cogent and relevant to our immediate environment?

Malta now forms part of a larger community so any conversation that takes place needs to have a broader context. As from the 1 January, Malta will have the Presidency of the European Union, the biggest political project post WWII. This project is under considerable strain from a number of sources. It will be a very important year for the EU and we should not underestimate Malta’s role in this discussion. For sure, terrorism will be one of the topics high on the agenda.

Terrorism in Europe is nothing new. In recent memory, the UK went through a period of terrorism. Spain and Italy too. They had to deal with some terrifying periods of their own. It just takes different forms. Today it has a very particular form and is having an impact on a number of communities and how we are perceiving each other.

I think it is only natural to be overwhelmed by emotions especially when faced with scenes of destruction and despair. But this is the moment to keep a clear head. To reflect, understand and find proper solutions. For sure one thing that we have learnt from this experience is that the bonds that keep us together are more fragile than we thought, or we never bothered much with them. This is an area that we need to work on.

Malta is now in a unique position to direct this conversation. The kind of choices that we will make now will define how we and the future generations will live. Artists need to participate in this conversation. In which format, that I do not know – that is something that everyone needs to figure it out for themselves.

What are some of the direct and tangible concepts and materials you will be employing to get your message across for this particular exhibition, and why did you choose these media over others?

The exhibition is curated by Matthew Attard. He did a very good job in giving shape to some of the ideas behind the exhibition.

If we agree that art is a form of communication then we can agree that each medium, being a drawing, painting, or a video is a vehicle with which you can best express your argument. At times this is best expressed through a painting, other times through an installation and other times through a video.

You need to ask yourself what do I need to bring out? What is the best medium to do it effectively? You will find limitations with everything, even within yourself. You might realize that you might not be able do something on your own and you would require some assistance in articulating your argument better. This is what Matthew did. I feel he provided his experience in helping with making the most of the works.

How do you think the ancillary events tied to the exhibit will help to flesh out the themes of the exhibition?

Sometimes visual arts are not enough to carry the argument. Sometimes you need to bring in some people and ask them some questions, because, well, you cannot do that in a drawing or painting. I am having a panel debate on January 25 which I am hoping will engage further the public. I am also hoping that debates will further become part of exhibitions, especially if they are carried in a centre for creativity.

The St James Cavalier Centre for Creativity – now known as ‘Spazju Kreattiv’ – which will be hosting the exhibition, has undergone a change in both creative and administrative direction over the past couple of years. Why did you choose this venue for your exhibition, and do you think it provides an adequate forum for the themes you’d like to put across and explore?

The Centre has gone through a number of changes. Now it is more structured with a number of focal points. I think, in terms of internal structure, it is much better than how it was before. My proposal was selected as part of the Spazju Kreattiv’s new season. So I am quite excited to have it running during Malta’s EU Presidency. I feel that the Centre can and should offer a forum for such themes and discussion. There is room to expand further and I think there is space for it.

On the other hand, funding will however remain the main challenge for many artists in Malta, especially smaller individual projects such as this. I do not think that small projects without funding will remain sustainable on the long run.

What do you hope that people will take away from the exhibition?

We are living in an age where there is an abundance of information for people to consume. So I feel it is very challenging to propose something that will clear some space and occupy one’s attention for a while. If I can manage to do that, then I’ll be happy. If I can manage to have people trying to find an answer to the exhibition’s question, then I think the exhibition would be a success.

What Comes After the 1 Minute of Silence will be on display at Spazju Kreattiv at St James Cavalier until February 5

 

 

Opening night: 7th January – 1900hrs

Saturday 7 January 2017 – Sunday 5 February 2017
Venue: Space B (St James Cavalier)

Fabrizio Ellul presents a project that deals with the consequences of terrorism on communities in Europe. The exhibition is divided into three parts: An installation of digital drawings, a video installation, and a panel discussion.

The panel discussion will be held on the 25th January and is being moderated by Mark Micallef.

An artist talk on Friday 3 February 2017 will conclude the project in which the artist, Fabrizio Ellul, discusses potential future projects based on the theme of European communities. Guests will furthermore be provided with a signed catalogue of the exhibition.

The exhibition is curated by Matthew Attard.

Opening night: 7 January 2017 at 1900hrs

This initiative is part of the Spazju Kreattiv Programme.

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