The Malta Independent 1 February 2023, Wednesday
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Pursuing meaning

Marika Azzopardi Sunday, 27 October 2019, 12:00 Last update: about 4 years ago

Largeish paintings always feel better to me. They manage to immerse me in a way smaller ones usually fail to. And the current show by neo artist Wallace Falzon promises to do just that. Immerse the viewer into a world of the artist's own, which however and perhaps unwittingly, reflects day to day realities of our times.

The exhibition entitled 'Pursuits' embraces two diverse categories - paintings and sculpture. Indeed where in one medium the artist excels in bright colours and boldness, amplification and expansiveness, in the other he excels in restriction, diminishing sculpted human figures into little more than rigid shrivelled sticks of dark and brooding materials. It feels as if he sucks the colour out the latter to pump up the former. Curator Roderick Camilleri has thought well to juxtapose the two genres in tandem, creating a dynamic show around the one artist.

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The exhibition is one of this artist's very first forays in public. It intends to be short and quick, practically spreading over an extra long weekend. The 20 paintings and 10 sculptures, globally created out of a variety of mixed media, reflect a world all his own, as Wallace Falzon delves into self-discovery via art.

In his paintings, Falzon treats the topic of the white collar worker and his plight, the routine, the rat race, the system which hems a person in until he or she becomes spirit-less and cynical, abiding by the rules and little more. There is a quasi autobiographical slant to the works, when the paintings are at times poignant and quasi-philosophical in their meaning.  The thematics are very existential, throwing a limelight on the business sphere from the perspective of somebody who obviously lived the 80s and its world of career-making with intensity. The alone-ness of the career-oriented is singled out in painful evidence.

The sculptures immediately strike the art fad as having the same gaunt, slender and purposely anonymous character of Giacometti's. The entire corpus of sculptural works  echoes several key aspects of Falzon's paintings, yet in a more rigid and un-colourful manner, playfully tactile. Most certainly the complimentarity of the works creates a striking juxtaposition which is at times surprising and highly intriguing. I feel confident that this novel artist whose artistic talent has lain under wraps for a very long time, will slowly but steadily be coming to the fore in the coming years. One hopes to see the development of a very individual style that will infuse the local art scene with a touch of something unique.

 

'Pursuits' by Wallace Falzon  is showing at La Borsa, Exchange Buildings, Republic Street, Valletta from  Friday 25 - Tuesday 29 October; Weekdays 9am - 6pm; Saturdays and Sundays 9am - 12pm.The exhibition is curated by Roderick Camilleri


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