• An exhibition of 21 life-sized fiberglass Maltese donkeys painted by noted Maltese and Mediterranean artists symbolising the need for peace at the Mdina Cathedral
The rebirth of the Mdina Cathedral Contemporary Art Biennale running from 13 November until 7 January, with APS as the main partner, will bring an innovative artistic feature – the silent city will have 21 one more donkeys on it: Mediterranean Peace Donkeys.
The Mediterranean Peace Donkey project is a peacebuilding public art exhibition of 21 life-sized fiberglass “Maltese” donkeys painted by premier Maltese and Mediterranean artists symbolising the need for peace and compassion between the Middle East and West, and more specifically, throughout the Mediterranean Basin (i.e. a donkey for each of the 21 Mediterranean nations).
The 21 artists selected to paint the artworks of the Mediterranean Peace Donkey project include premier contemporary artists to emerging younger artists from both Malta and the Mediterranean that use a variety of artistic mediums: Daniela Guevska, Damian Ebejer , Emma Morgan, Abi Macleod Clark, Federico Chini , Farid Fadel, Hend Adnan, Ibrahim el Dessouky, James Micallef Grimaud, James Vella Clark, Karim Abdel Malak, Kenneth Zammit Tabona, Khaled Hafiz, Mariam Hathout, Mohamed Talaat, Rachel Galea, Reda Abdel Rahman and Valerio Schembri.
Organised by CARAVAN, an international peacebuilding arts NGO, The Mediterranean Peace Donkey exhibition uses the symbol of the renowned and endangered Maltese donkey to focus global attention on four critical needs: interreligious harmony; East-West relations; donkey welfare in zones of conflict and humanitarian assistance for migrants/refugees.
The form for the life-size fiberglass donkeys was sculpted by the premier Egyptian artist Dr Reda Abdel Rahman, which were then fabricated in Malta by Maltese craftsmen Joe Bartolo, Joe Gauci and Gilbert Gauci. The Mediterranean Peace Donkey Project follows in the footsteps of both the widely successful 2013 CARAVAN public art Egyptian donkey initiative in Cairo, Egypt and London, which was seen by over 120,000 people, and also of an international approach to public art that has featured painted animals.
For the Mediterranean Peace Donkey initiative, CARAVAN is partnering with The Donkey Sanctuary, the global leader in the field of donkey welfare who is also primary sponsor, together with United Religions Initiative (URI).
The curator of the Mediterranean Peace Donkey is Rev. Paul-Gordon Chandler, President of CARAVAN, while the Biennale artistic director is Dr Giuseppe Schembri-Bonaci.
During the course of the two-month exhibition, CARAVAN also has two concerts at the historic St Paul’s Cathedral in Mdina that feature works and musicians that uniquely blend and explore the richness of Middle Eastern and Western musical traditions: ‘On A Caravan’ on November 28 and ‘Notes of Faith’ on December 4.
For more information visit the website mdinabiennale.org.