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Art Discussion Group - Malta



Matthew Cassar

Matthew Cassar is an incurable romantic. His expression overflows with sentiment, feeling and emotion. His inspiration is light and movement and the grandeur he beholds in nature’s magic, mystery and enigma. The sea captures his imagination and he expresses it on canvas in all its moods – rough or serene. Being an avid dreamer and full of fantasy he imbues reality with lyricism and poetry to touch the heart and mind.

After long observation and deep reflection he expresses a rough sea breaking on the rocks in crashing waves with crested foam and stinging spray as if all hell is let loose. Matthew does not cower before the sea’s superhuman power; he delights in its dynamic energy. Yet he also loves the swell in open sea, its viscosity, its mountainous waves and deep troughs. 

He is inspired by a calm sea lit by a wonderful sunrise or flaming sunset, the ensuing placidity or reverie. His rare and unique way of capturing atmosphere, mood and character of this fabulous element is the result of his deep sensibility and acute sensitivity. The cosmic spirit of this liquid and fluid element overwhelms him.

The subjects he chooses are redolent with romanticism. ‘Derelict Wreck’ is quite representative. Thrown on the rocks and abandoned it is symbolic of human tragedy. It lies decaying, forgotten and unsung. The leaden sky is auxiliary to the mood. ‘Luzzu in Rough Sea’ is also symbolic. Unmanned it seems a ghost sailing in the mist, infinitely without a destination. ‘Riding the Waves’ perhaps a privateer seems inspired by Matthew’s imagination based on literature he read when a child. ‘Caught in the Storm’ in great turbulence and mountainous seas reveals and expresses Matthew’s excitement in reading classics when he was a child.

Brought up in an artistic milieu Matthew was determined to become a painter and teacher of art. During his childhood he used to read novels adapted for children and loved comics. 

The stories he read stimulated his imagination and fantasy and being a dreamer were the first sparks to ignite his creative talent. Matthew is a conscientious tutor of art and the respect of his students demonstrates his gentle, kind and human approach.

Matthew Cassar’s poetic and lyrical quality in his creations reveal his romantic vision and concept.

E. V. Borg

07. 05. 2018

‘My artistic vision and basic source of inspiration is light and atmosphere, dynamics and movement. 

I am fascinated by rough stormy seas as since early youth I used to observe and meditate rolling waves, 

studying their oscillatory movement and watching their progress as they rush and break on the shore. 

My favourite artist is Turner and I mainly work in oil’ - the artist Matthew Cassar.


Matthew Cassar was born in Rabat on 25th November, 1946. He started studying Art at the Lyceum, Hamrun under Esprit Barthet during the early 60’s. During this period he also attended workshops with Chev. Francesco Borg and Anthony Mahoney and attended the Malta School of Art for four years. Between 1993 and 1996 Matthew embarked on a four year course in Master Art with the University of Scranton, Pennsylvania. He was awarded the diploma in June 17, 1994. Matthew also studied Art History at the University of Malta between 1996 and 1999. He also studied Decorative Paint techniques at the Euro Institute of Music and Arts.  In 1999 the artist was awarded a Special Distinction for his work at the Malta International Art Biennale. Matthew is an Art teacher and he has taught mainly at St. Elias College, Sta. Venera and at St. Paul’s Missionary College, Rabat. However he still teaches at the Malta Society of Arts in Valletta. He has been teaching at all levels for 24 years. The artist has participated in numerous exhibitions locally and abroad and has also organized several exhibitions for his students.



‘Seascapes’ a personal exhibition by the Rabat artist Matthew Cassar will be inaugurated on Friday 11th May 2018 at La Vittoria Band Club, Mellieħa. The exhibition, a collection of around 30 paintings will be open to the general public between the 11th and 20th May 2018.