Mario Galea
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Malta (Malte) 

MARIO GALEA was born in l959. He studied at the School of Art under Joseph L. Mallia and Anthony Calleja. He attended a course in ceramics with Anthony Briffa between 1990 - 1994 and a workshop in Unconventional clay, in February 1997, with Trudy Allen Golley. Mario studied restoration with the late Guiseppe Galea and specialised at the Istituto De Stefano in Sicily. In l989 he joined the Museums Department as a restorer of paintings.
He has taken part in a number of exhibitions including Maltafest l989 and l990, Ljieli Mediterranji l99l, l993, l994, l995; Teacher's Whisky Art Award l992-l995; an exhibition of Contemporary Sacred Art in Malta - l994, l996. He also exhibited a metal sculpture in the First Art Bienalle of Malta, in 1995.
He was invited to exhibit in Arti Indipendenza l993 along with four young aspiring artists.
In December l994 he held his first personal exhibition at the National Museum of Fine Arts, South Street, Valletta. Works included metal sculptures, ceramics, and paintings on canvas and panels.
He was invited to exhibit his paintings at the Island International Hotel from January to March l996.
Since his last one man show Mario has exhibited various works in collective exhibitions in Malta. He had been invited to show two metal sculptures at the Centre for Creativity St.James Cavalier in Valletta Malta in September 2000, in an exhibition entitled Art in Malta Today.
In 2003 Mario Galea graduated with a First Class Honors degree in conservation of paintings from the University of Malta. Since then he has been working with Heritage Malta and is currently a principal conservator of a small but very active preventive conservation unit.
In 2005 Mario was commissioned for a sculpture piece of public art which can be viewed on a roundabout leading to Zebbug / Siggiewi in Malta. The metal sculpture, entitled "fighting spirit" is over eight feet high is in mild steel and portrays a freestanding lunging fencer.

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critiques et commentaires

the Path of the Spirit
Belonging to the select group of truly committed artists of his generation, Mario Galea distinguishes himself through a perceptible inclination at bestowing a spiritualising trait to his imagery. Though he emerged relatively late on the local artistic scene, that lapse of time between his early formation and his present standing in contemporary artistic production in Malta has proved itself to the leavening element prior to what now can be considered as a point of maturity.
In no way tied down to any particular medium - painting, sculpture and ceramics all feature within his domain of expression - Mario Galea views art as the vehicle for a constant search towards attaining a feeling for the intangible. His sources of inspiration are multifarious; this could not be otherwise considering the range of interests with which his life is crowded, from contemplating the beauty of natural forms to building up collections of man-made artefacts.
His regard to all these is however all the time guided by the ennobling paths of the spirit, and his passion for making icons on traditional lines and methods, an exercise that reveals above all else theological truths through the use of light, should be deemed highly significant. In addition, I feel that his day-to-day occupation as an art restorer with the Museums Department has served, over the last few years, not only to make him give due attention to details together with a scrupulous handling of his materials, but has equally instilled in him a more mature sense for a life-giving force passed on to his own creations.
Artistic expression reflects more or less the character of its creator. In the case of Mario Galea, his no-nonsense but gentle approach to life and human relationships in general has visibly pollinated the nature of his imagery where the element of symbolism is the key that demands attention in all respects. The abstract language that he has been lately employing as the enriching bridge between the artist and his effusions goes further to underscore his determination to view art as a fundamental means to that interminable quest of the spirit in man.

Emanuel Fiorentino

Derived by and large from experiences, circumstances, everyday living, as well as a varied spectrum of influences and fantasies, it therefore cannot be tied down to a particular theme, although there remains a predominant preoccupation with living in today`s sometimes chaotic world.
My work is about an in-depth search for spiritual meaning, about that intangible something in between realities that is only felt, sensed, but never seen or touched. I have sought to give shape to that hidden elusive concept by expressing it in a variety of media although the medium itself is only a tool and not a means of expression. I feel it is singularly important not to be tied down to a particular medium, as my art is about searching, liberating, changing, experimenting.
This sense of flux, of ever becoming is in effect at the opposite polarity of reaching the security of a safe haven.

the artist