Conrad Attard - Malta Playing Arts

Conrad Attard

A traditional carnival death mask (tal-mewt meaning ‘of death’; →9 for contrast) from the town of Għaxaq takes centre stage, flanked by curled vertebrae spirals-of-life (→Box front and 8), which together form a large ♣. Its stem shows stony fragments falling hourglass-like, denoting that time is running out. Everything falls into place and, from the pieces, something new is rebuilding. Behind are a further eight small ♣s in lacquer on an elongated Maltese cross styled like filigree (→Back of cards and back of Box). This card was drawn in ink from a papier-mâché mask, painted in acrylics and set into digital format (→photo collage for 9♣). In sum, this design is a solemn reminder that we are mortals, soon gone, while a last splash of lacquer appears in the background – our art will remain. Hope dies last.

(text by Margit Waas)