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Joseph Calleja

Artist Biography

What is this material / object / form telling me? This inquisitive companion is constant throughout my practice. I ask it of a found object, just as I do a finished work. It is a state of being, as opposed to a process. My work as an artist is never finished, it simply treads a conversational path from one work to another, forever searching. This is true of the works presented at Tatha Gallery. These works in their diversity have evolved drastically throughout the creation process, mostly in informing one another. I find solace in the knowledge that each has been repeatedly stripped back to its foundations. By adopting an experimental approach, I carry a meditative state with me throughout the process of making, working in direct response to the formal and conceptual qualities of the materials at hand. Each of my responses begin with: what is this material / object / form telling me? My job as an artist is to convey that response back to the world.


E D U C A T I O N

MFA Art Space & Nature, distinction - The University of Edinburgh. 2010 – 2012

BA Hons Drawing and Painting, first class - Edinburgh College of Art. 2006 - 2010

BA Combined Studies - Edinburgh College of Art. 2005 - 2006

Credits in Philosophy and Theology - Angelicum Pontificia Universita` Roma. 2000 – 2005

Credits in History of Art and Geography - University of Malta. 1999 – 2000

R E S I D E N C Y

Wasps Residency, 2020.

An Talla Solais Residency 2018.

The Robert Callender International Residency for Young Artists 2012.


C O L L E C T I O N S

The Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh.

Art Spot Korin, Kyoto.

Weissraum Gallery, Kyoto.

Frasers, Edinburgh.

Various private collections, International.

C U R A T O R I A L | P R O P O S A L S | P R O J E C T S

 Represented Visual Artist in - There Is No Edge, curated by Blanca de la Torre, Zoran Eric`, and Fabrizio Mifsud Soler, bidding for the Maltese Pavilion at the 76th edition of the Venice Biennale, 2019. Shortlisted proposal.


 Position of Assistant Curator with Gavin Morrison, Fabrizio Mifsud-Soler, Deirdre Roberson and Jane Warrilow bidding for the Maltese Pavilion at the 75th edition of the Venice Biennale. 2016. Shortlisted proposal.


 Position of Assistant with Atlas Arts and Andrew Patrizio in their bid for Scotland in Venice 2017. My role in this team was in the remit of international dealings with the Venice Biennale via phone and e mail communicating in Italian | essential translations Italian - English regarding the artist statements the artwork and curatorial texts | proposal review. Shortlisted proposal.


 Position of Co-Curator with Satelliet Groep Netherlands for the Opening events of Valletta European City of Culture 2018 with the title Buoyant. The Sea our Neighbour. 2016. Shortlisted proposal.


Collection SimonPaul (2012 – ongoing). Curated in memory of Simon Paul MacFadyen, in collaboration with Ogygian Residency. Included works relate to specific artists who made distinct contributions to contemporary art, in particular works dealing in environmental, spatio-architectural and minimal aesthetics. Original works and limited editions in this collection include: Gerhard Richter, Katie Paterson, Cornelia Parker, Tacita Dean, Roger Ackling, Elizabeth Ogilvie, Robert Callender, and Ian Hamilton Finlay. The collection aims to work with forthcoming artists connected with the Ogygian Residency.


Ogygian residency (ongoing) Converting own derelict house with adjacent wood workshop into an international artist retreat / residency / studios / gallery space, on the island of Gozo, with a programme of events and international collaborative hub, stemming from existing networks.


http://josephcalleja.blogspot.com/2014/08/77mgarrroadogygian.html

Ogygian (2012) Proposal submitted to the Maltese government with the aim to engender effective dialogue and public engagement prior to Valletta 2018 city of culture. This programme is informed by the document bearing the same title. It relates to art programmes that unfold within derelict and post-industrial spaces. This one takes into consideration the desalination plant at the shores of Qala, Gozo in Malta.


https://www.dropbox.com/s/008cothnd65ib38/Proposal%20desalination%20plant.pdf?dl=0

 Artist/curator projects (2019) As Coastline is to Ocean, an exhibition at An Talla Solais featuring new works from the series imcaqlaq alongside works by David Cass and Robert Callender. This project is currently being restructured for an exhibition at Summerhall in 2021 with the collaboration of Maltese artist, Austin Camilleri / (2020) artist/curator, part of the Tokyo Cultural Olympiad 2020, as led by Lateral Lab.


B I B L I O G R A P H Y

Art North Issue 2, article about As Coastline is to Ocean, Summer Issue 2019.

https://artnorth-magazine.com/buy/art-north-summer-2019-2

Art North Issue 1, work included in a review by Ian Stephen. Spring Issue 2019.

https://artnorth-magazine.com/buy/art-north-spring-2019-1

Interview with Katherine Aly about the series imcaqlaq, 2018.

https://katherinealy.com/imcaqlaq/

An Unfinished Compendium of Materials, Dr. Rachel Harkness, University of Aberdeen, 2016.

A2B | Robert Callender, An Artist’s Journey, Lateral Lab Publication, June 2015.

Wiċċ imb wiċċ, Images of the Self, ed Austin Camilleri, July 2012.

The Scotsman, A studious approach, Duncan Macmillan, 15 June 2010.

http://www.scotsman.com/news/art-review-edinburgh-college-of-art-degree-show-1-812958

The Malta Independent on Sunday, Gozitan Artist makes New Sensations shortlist, 10 October 2010.

Northings, Gannets | Na Suilairean, Ian Stephen, 2 November 2010.

http://northings.com/2010/11/02/gannets-na-suilairean/

Northings, Interlopers, Ian Stephen, 28 January 2011.

http://northings.com/2011/01/28/interlopers/

The Scotsman, Art review: Jeff Koons | RSA new contemporaries | Susie Leiper: The word on wood, Duncan Macmillan, 21 March 2011.

http://www.scotsman.com/news/art-review-jeff-koons-rsa-new-contemporaries-susie-leiper-the-word-on-wood-1-1544872

Redwhite, Images of the Self, Pawlu, 27 July 2012.

http://redwhitemt.com/2012/images-of-the-self/

Catalogues: RSA New Contemporaries 2011, New Sensations 2010, Malta Arts Festival 2012.

Selected Exhibitions 

A W A R D S

RSA Wasps Award 2019. Two weeks residency at Admiral’s House on the Isle of Skye.

Hope Scott Trust Grant 2019. New work towards As Coastline is to Ocean.

An Talla Solais Award at the RSA Open Exhibition 2017.

Selected from Edinburgh College of Art degree show 2012 for the The Robert Callender International Residency for Young Artists (RCIRYA).

Andrew Grant Major Travelling Award 2011.

Shortlisted from the art colleges in the UK by Mat Collishaw, Rachel Whiteread; Darren Flook; Alex Farquharson; and Soraya Rodriguez for the work Tixref to participate at the Saatchi New Sensations 2010.

First ranking at the Malta Arts Scholarship Awards 2010.

The James Cumming Award for Draughtsmanship 2010 for the work Tixref.

Selected from the Scottish Art Colleges degree shows 2010, for The New Contemporaries 2011 by the Royal Scottish Academy.

The Edinburgh Printmakers Award 2010.

S O L O E X H I B I T I O N S A N D C O L L A B O R A T I O N S

Ways of Thinking - collaboration with mezzo soprano Clare Ghigo, curated by Lateral Lab for the Tokyo Olympiad 2020, various sites, May – July 2020, various sites Japan.

As Coastline is to Ocean - artist/co-curator, alongside works by David Cass and Robert Callender, An Talla Solais Gallery, July 2019, Ullapool, Scotland.

Mediated Existence - curated by Naoko Mabon with the support of Ingleby Gallery and Collection Simon Paul, alongside works by I-Chern Lai and Katie Paterson, Sleeper Gallery, October 2016, Edinburgh.

Shards of Zen - intervention at Summerhall, Edinburgh Arts Festival 2013, August 2013, Edinburgh.

Stratum - solo exhibition at Weissraum Gallery, September 2012, Kyoto.

Con•stant - collaboration with Jonathan Galea at Tent Gallery, February 2012, Edinburgh.

Out of Site - collaboration with David Cass at the Solar Pavilion for the Edinburgh Arts Festival 2011, August 2011, Edinburgh.

Synderesis - solo exhibition at the National Mining Museum of Scotland, October 2009, Newtongrange, Scotland.

Surtr N Ogygia - collaboration with Thorunn Bjornsdottir at Gladstone’s Gallery, January 2009, Edinburgh.

S E L E C T E D C O L L E C T I V E E X H I B I T I O N S

Tatha Gallery Exhibition, curated by Helen Glassford and Lindsay Bennett, Tatha Gallery, February 2020, Newport-on-Tay, Scotland.

RSA Open Exhibition 2019, Royal Scottish Academy, November 2019, Edinburgh.

Art Check-in, curated by Masahiro Kawanaka, Taneri, September 2019, Seto, Japan.

RSA Open Exhibition 2018, Royal Scottish Academy, July 2018, Edinburgh.

11 Pedestals, 11 Walls, by 11 Artists, curated by Masahiro Kawanaka, Art Spot Korin, June 2018, Kyoto.

Robert Callender: Plastic Beach… Poetry of Everyday, curated by Lateral Lab, City Art Centre, May 2018, Edinburgh.

RSA Open Exhibition 2017, Royal Scottish Academy, July 2017, Edinburgh.

5 Pedestals, 5 Days, by 5 Artists, curated by Masahiro Kawanaka, gallery 6, July 2017, Kobe, Japan.

Hidden Door 2017, curated by David Martin, The Old Leith Theatre, June 2017, Edinburgh.

In Transit, curated by Vince Briffa, March – July 2017, Dusseldorf, Leeuwarden, Vorarlberg.

12 Pedestals, 12 Days, by 12 Artists, curated by Masahiro Kawanaka, galerie Weissraum, May 2017, Kyoto.

Proposition Void, Fettes College November 2014, Edinburgh.

Intersections, Patriothall Gallery, August 2014, Edinburgh.

Equilibrium, Whitespace, October 2013, Edinburgh.

Art Shower 2012, Contemporary Art Space Osaka (CASO), September 2012, Osaka.

Wicc imb Wicc, curated by Austin Camilleri as part of the Malta International Arts Festival 2012 at St. James Cavalier, featuring works by Tracey Emin and Giuseppe Hysler, July 2012, Valletta.

The Making of It, at the Old Ambulance Depot as part of the Edinburgh Annuale 2012, June 2012, Edinburgh.

23 kg 73cm x 40cm x 46cm, a folding and unfolding travelling exhibition, April 2012, Nagoya, Yamaguchi and Kyoto.

Sensory Worlds, curated by Rachel Harkness at INSPACE, December 2011, Edinburgh.

Drawing Attention, Cupar Arts Festival 2011, October 2011, Cupar, Scotland.

Arboretum, Patriothall Gallery, May 2011, Edinburgh.

Concrete Flows, a response to the site of Cumbernauld Town Centre, March 2011, Cumbernauld, Scotland.

RSA New Contemporaries 2011, selected Scottish graduates from 2010 degree shows at the Royal Scottish Academy, March 2011, Edinburgh.

Interlopers, An Lanntair, January 2011, Stornoway, Scotland.

Now Here, Point Hotel, December 2010, Edinburgh.

Vista, the Victoria Contemporary Art Tour, curated by Mario Cassar, November 2010, Gozo, Malta.

The House of the Nobleman, curated by Wolfe von Lenkievicz, Victoria Golembiovskaya and Rebecca Wilson, with the participation of New Sensations 2010, Saatchi Gallery and Channel 4, featuring works by leading contemporary artists, October 2010, London.

Floored, for The Edinburgh Arts Festival 2010 at Meadowbank Arts Complex, August 2010, Edinburgh.

Film Strips, Film House, September 2008, Edinburgh.

Second Nature, Skateraw, Richard Demarco’s Archive, September 2008, Dunbar, Scotland.