BOOK LAUNCH: ‘ON CULTURE: MAPPING VALLETTA 2018’

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On Culture: Mapping Valletta 2018 has recently been launched by the Valletta 2018 Foundation.

The publication presents multidisciplinary research on the use of cultural spaces in Malta and Gozo.

Addressing the crowd during the book launch, Valletta 2018 Chairman Jason Micallef said, “Research allows us to examine what communities want and need. It helps us increase the value of our propositions.” Mr Micallef described the publication as “a positive step in ensuring the constant dialogue with the community – with our audience.”

The book, which is now on sale from major book stores and Agenda outlets, tackles various subjects – from Argentine tango to the use of theatre spaces – from a broad range of academic fields, as part of the Valletta 2018 Cultural Mapping project. This analysis is carried out in light of Malta’s ever-changing cultural sector in the run-up to Valletta 2018, bringing forth compelling new thinking on the island’s cultural realities.

Editor Prof. Vicki Ann Cremona stated that the book forms part of the University of Malta’s contribution to the European Capital of Culture title. She described the book as “a series of multidisciplinary studies focusing on the public sphere. On the one hand, it discusses the social aspect and looks at democratisation, public involvement, participation, and accessibility. On the other hand, it examines governance with regard to local councils and infrastructures such as libraries and theatres.”

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Cultural Mapping is a Valletta 2018 research project designed to generate and assess information about the use of spaces for cultural purposes in Malta and Gozo. The project is creating a valuable information database which maps out the cultural use of public and private spaces across the islands. This project’s interactive online map had been launched in 2015. An international conference on the subject, entitled Cultural Mapping: Debating Spaces and Places, was then held in October 2015.

A third strand of the Cultural Mapping project, stemming from the research carried out for this publication, is a detailed Theatres Audit which is currently half way through completion. The Theatres Audit project will be looking at theatres in various localities in Malta and Gozo from an artistic, technical and building perspective, in order to understand the state of such theatres and which of these require intervention.

The Valletta 2018 Cultural Mapping project is taking place in collaboration with the University of Malta and is supported by the Culture and Audiovisual Unit within the Ministry for Justice, Culture and Local Government. The book is published by Midsea Books.

For more information, visit the Valletta 2018 website.