Society features

Philip Chircop exhibition at the Malta Society of Arts

eloquent silence by the late local artist Philip Chircop is open at the Malta Society of Arts (MSA) Art Galleries in the heart of Valletta until June 16. All the paintings that are part of the exhibition are exhibited for the first time.

This offers visitors a unique opportunity to gain new insight into who Chircop was as an artist, while undoubtedly noticing a sense of spontaneity and freedom that makes his work remarkably vibrant and dynamic.

The idea behind the exhibition is to showcase a large body of Chircop’s work, showcasing his exploratory abstract vocabulary and artistic development throughout a career that spanned around 60 years.

The show mixes two interesting features – a commemorative aspect as well as a retrospective element.

It includes his very first abstract works, which date back to the late 1950s when he was training at the School of Art, as well as a body of work he created just before his death, when he was actually preparing for an exhibition.

“Chircop worked with different materials and techniques and explored various visual possibilities around abstract expressions,” says curator Roderick Camilleri.

“His medium has always been a means to an end, providing a creative opportunity to externalize his artistic expression.

Forged the way to bring a new way of thinking in the realm of modern visual expression

“Usually the workflow itself would inform Chircop what kind of medium and technique to use, most often gravitating towards experimental processes and mixed-media approaches.”

In his monograph on Chircop, art historian Joseph Paul Cassar, Professor, states that the artist is a key figure in modern aesthetics in Malta.

“Along with other pioneers, he paved the way for bringing a new way of thinking to the realm of modern visual expression,” he explains.

“No study of the birth of the modern period, or better yet, of abstract art in Malta is complete without references to his innovative pioneering contributions.”

MSA President Adrian Mamo is proud that the company is putting on such a unique show.

eloquent silence presents a large number of works by this prolific pioneer of modern abstract art in Malta. The works are presented from a very new point of view and for the first time,” he notes.

eloquent silence by the late artist Philip Chircop and curated by Roderick Camilleri is on display at the Malta Society of Arts Art Galleries in Valletta until June 16. For more details visit or

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