Towards the end of the last scholastic term, the Grade 10 Art students of San Andrea Senior School visited the National Museum of Fine Arts and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, both of which located in Valletta. At the National Museum of Fine Arts they were greeted by the Senior Curator Mr. Sandro Debono who introduced them to the Art of Mattia Preti (1613-1699), one of the greatest Baroque artists of his time. One of his most famous works in Malta is the ceiling of St. John’s Co-Cathedral in Valletta, painted in oil on stone. At the National Museum of Fine Arts one finds a hall with numerous works by this artist hanging on the walls. Mr. Sandro Debono explained how Mattia Preti, among other artists, used models who posed for him. Also, how artists reproduced more than one version of their paintings, sometimes even facilitating their task by making use of stencils, which they used to produce themselves from their original art work. Mr. Debono then went on to explain certain artistic techniques and how they differ from one part of the country to another within the same time frame. The next part of the morning was spent at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, where one of Mattia Preti’s painting, the “Ecce Homo”, was being restored. Here the students were introduced to the art of restoration with a presentation delivered by the Italian restorer Mr. Giuseppe Mantella. They learnt about the laborious processes required to restore (repair) a work of art. The visit at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs ended with a guided tour around the Ministry by Ms. Doris Zammit. It was a very enriching experience!
A presentation delivered by the Italian restorer Mr. Sandro Debono
Mr. Sandro Debono giving further information about restoration
Group photo. The Grade 10 students with Ms Maria
A guided tour around the Ministry by Ms. Doris Zammit