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Art Discussion Group - Malta

93rd Artist Meeting

Timelessness - Mary Attard

The Art Discussion Group (ADG) will be holding its 93rd meeting on Tuesday 19th April at 19.00 hrs at MISCO Training Centre (first floor on right) in Fino Showrooms in Notabile Road Mriehel. Mary Attard (1949- ) who is exhibiting at Intercontinental Hotel (18th April - 18th June, 2011) is our guest artist for April.  

A photographer of taste and refinement, she has in the past shown innovative photographic work - a formidable threat to tradition and convention, to rigid photographic tenets (reference to the collection in a personal exhibition at Ministry Gozo September 1997), has matured into a more poetic and lyrical approach embracing a romantic streak of realism: a joy to the eye, heart and mind. In a PowerPoint presentation Mary Attard will show a representative cross-section of images she has produced recently and in retrospect.

The artist's interest in photographs goes back to 1970 when she travelled to Britain and applied for a course on photo journalism and worked there to practice what she learnt. Returning to Malta she experimented with collage, montage, assemblage, soft pastel and photography. 

She sought the help of Anthony Lucian Cauchi her tutor in soft pastel, well known for his romantic flair and joined art appreciation courses at AZAD in Valletta though she categorically distances herself from any academic training or discipline. Recently one of her works was chosen for the poster of the Collective Exhibition: Unity in Diversity (May 2010) a strong bold image of reflected colours in water. It made a hit with its bold impact and forceful nature.

Mary's creations are born from forms to become images through the power of ideas. All are related to habitat and all are fragments of a wider argument, a vast dialogue of an imagined wider world of reality. Reality is Mary's obsession and being a natural philosopher her concept and vision delves into this profound subject. What is reality? Is reality relative? Or is there an absolute reality? 

Reality as conceived by Mary is relative and personal. Each one of us creates his own reality, his own world and seeks to live it. Thus reality becomes something personalised, individual, rare and unique. It becomes our truth and our creed and we jealously shelter behind it, protect it from rivals, and from creed it becomes faith. 

An analysis of her vision and concept: 'Without Boundaries' appeared in Malta This Month, Air Malta In-Flight Magazine, no.94 in January 1998.

Mary has dreams; she lives for the reality she creates, for the truth she believes in. Even if truth like reality is relative. Every person perceives his own truth, his own reality, his own art. Man might live a lie, an illusion. 

We refer to life as a short passage, a dream that becomes reality. Yet man is content to live his dream to the full hoping that tomorrow the sun would shine warmer and brighter. Man is ready to live in a loving relationship with nature in such warmth, in a loving embrace with life.

Love cures and strengthens man as the works by Mary Attard do too. It empowers man to live a lie that educates, and transforms it into an ideal. This is exactly what we mean when we say that the source of justice, equity, truth and liberty is love. Love carries all before it. We are ready to live/die for love. Mary's art is her ideal, her élan vital, her will to live in love of nature and man.

E. V. Borg

Chairman ADG