Damian Ebejer

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Damian Ebejer

Damian Ebejer (born 1961) is a Maltese painter, son of playwright Francis Ebejer.


Early Career

Born in Somerset, England, Damian Ebejer is a self-taught artist living and working in Malta. He was considered a late starter when he appeared on the local art scene with his first solo exhibition held in 1994 at the Museum of Fine Arts, Valletta. In 2001 he left his career in the hotel industry to be able to dedicate time exclusively to his art. Since that date his output has been prolific; he has worked toward and organized eleven solo exhibitions and has taken part in several group collectives; among which one held at the Belgravia Gallery, London in December 2014.

Abstract Art

A major turning point in Damian’s artistic trajectory was his A Tale of Consequent Parallels exhibition in 2007 at the Gallery G, Lija Malta where he displayed his first ever collection of abstract works. It is in this genre that he has continued to develop his techniques and discover new ways to explore and delve into his inspirations and innermost feelings. His works, often shifting from the dexterous to the self-assessing to the outright spontaneous, leave an impression which is distinguishably his own. Ebejer often addresses themes reflecting the human condition and hidden memories that wait silently within the subconscious. In 2013, his 10th exhibition The Passage of Memory captured his artistic journey over the previous twenty years.

Mural Paintings

Damian’s versatile artistic repertoire also leads him to further his interest in mural painting. In between working on new collections and artistic projects he has been commissioned to design and paint numerous murals and ceilings in neo-classical, baroque and naïve, early medieval styles. These can be found in palaces and museums around Malta namely, Palazzo de Piro in l-Imdina, Palazzo Parisio of Valletta, Palazzo Falson Mdina, Palazzo Olivier in Balzan, Palazzo Marina Valletta, San Anard Grotto chapel at Lunzjata, limits of Rabat, the Carmelite Priory Mdina and Casa Rocca Piccola Valletta, besides private residences in Malta, Italy, England and Ireland. He looks upon these as “disciplinary work variants…”.

Poetry

Ebejer is also a writer of poetry and has published two books of selected poems; Talks with Silent Portraits (1983) and The Divide of Silence (2011). His poetry weaves together an impulsive, image driven sensibility and clearly shows that everything affords a moment’s inspiration. “…Ebejer reveals an integral human need to find the stuff of spectacle and wonder in the most humdrum realities of our lives…” (Farrugia, 2011).

In 2015, he was designated as European Ambassador of the World Citizen Artists (WCA) which is an international non-profit organization working to promote Peace and global awareness through creativity.


Solo Exhibitions

  • December 2013 - The Passage of Memory at The Priory, l-Imdina

Collective Exhibitions

  • March 2003 - Crossroads, Naxxar
  • December 2014 - World Citizen Artists at the Belgravia Gallery, London - Runner-up Finalist
  • November 2015 to January 2016 - The Mdina Cathedral Contemporary Art Biennale with painting Out of Nothing
  • December 2015 - Caravan arts (US/Egypt), one of the 21 life size Mediterranean Peace Donkeys (Boxxla) during the Mdina Biennale
  • January 2016 - Japanese & Maltese Impressions Collective held at the Cavalieri Art Hotel with 2 paintings; Alphabet of Desire and Stillness of the Cliffs

Notable Commissions

  • 1995 Palazzo Marina, Valletta - three ceilings and staircase, two designed and created by Damian Ebejer and the other restored; all with Baroque and neo-classical Italian motifs
  • 2000 Parish Hall, Rabat - decoration with floral motifs and scroll work and faux marbling of dado
  • 2002 Casa Rocca Piccola, Valletta - designed and painted the ceiling of the private chapel, producing a trompe d’oeil of a dome, including lower lever architectural structures
  • 2003/2006 Palazzo Falson (Norman House), l-Imdina - restoration of friezes in three rooms, (dining, drawing and reception rooms). Designed and painted a fourth frieze for the master bed-room. Designed and painted Chapel ceiling (elaborate ceiling rose with surround) and walls. Faux 12th century niche depicting St. Agatha. Trompe d’oeil of artist’s open wardrobe filled with artist’s materials and other bric-a-brac in studio. 16 coat-of-arms shields. Faux effects for fire-places and other stone work structures. Restoration of Dutch Delft tiles (paint work) surrounding huge oven in the main kitchen
  • 2006 Palazzo Olivier, Balzan - creation and decoration of entire ten ceiling panels (between beams) in the upper Sala Grande. Monochrome paint work
  • 2006 Palazzo Parisio, Valletta - restoration of entire surrounding frieze, marbled archway and dado designs, including ante chamber where Emperor Napoleon is reputed to have slept
  • 2007/2008 Casa Suban, Cottonera - Trompe l'oeil hallway arch, balustrades up the main stairway, columns and background landscape, includes wall fountain halfway up the stairs. All structure depicted in faux marble. Also added various requested details
  • 2008/2009 Palazzo de Piro, l-Imdina - reproduction of various indistinguishable motifs painted on the ceilings. Two main rooms both including extensive artwork on the barrel vaulted arches
  • 2008/2009 St.Paul’s Parish Church, [[Rabat}}- restoration and marbling of wall pillars, flutes columns and column base cornice. 2011, marbling of both side church walls
  • 2009/2010 Palazzo Bosia, Balzan - the creation and hand-painting of Italian Neo-Classical designs on 20 ft beams (12 in all) for the Sala Grande and the creation and hand-painting of a florette panelled ceiling (68 panels in all) in another room
  • 2013 Carmelite Grotto Chapel, dedicated to St Leonard, Lunzjata, limits of Rabat - design and painting of a fresco secco, in the 11th Century manner, depicting the Virgin of Tenderness (La Bruna), St Leonard and a Byzantinesque cross set within a gemmed medallion; includes early Christian art motifs painted onto the arch over the altar
  • 2014 Palazzo de Vilhena, Valletta - new offices and headquarters of the [[Fondazzjoni Patrimonju Malti] - ten by five foot alcove trompe l’oeil including a four foot ornate urn with pedestal

Press and Media: articles and features

  • May 1994 - ARTI MILL-PAJSAĠĠ, It-Torċa by Adrian Stivala, with 1 pic; Wardija
  • May 1994 - BAPTISM OF FIRE, Sunday Times by E. Fiorentino, with 1 pic; Vines
  • March 1996 - PAINTING POSSIBILITIES, Sunday Times by E. Fiorentino, with 1 pic; Geranium in Pot with Oranges
  • May 1996 - WIRJIET RICENTI, It-Torċa by Adrian Stivala
  • June 1997 - PAINTED MOODS AT THE PHOENICIA, Sunday Times by E. Fiorentino, with 1 pic: Salt Pans of the Mediterranean
  • June 1997 - IĊ-ĊELEBRAZZJONI VIŻIVA, DAMIAN EBEJER, L-Orizzont by Adrian Stivala
  • August 2000 - STARING AT THE CEILING, Sunday Times, full page of cover supplement by Joanna Ripard, with 2 pics; ceiling detail at Palazzo Marina, Valletta
  • July 2002 - Preview of SOLO EXHIBITION ‘STRANGE BREW’, Sunday Times with portrait photo
  • July 2002 - STRANGE BREW, WIRJA TA’ PITTURA RIĊENTI, L-Orizzont by George Glanville, with 2 pics; Stillness Before The Storm and Quiet Temptation
  • July 2002 - ONE CONCOCTION AND ONE REJECTION, Sunday Times by E. Fiorentino, with 1 pic; Forever Primitive
  • August 2002 - DAMIAN EBEJER SMILES ON A SURREALIST APPLE, maltastar.com by Narcy Calamatta, with 2 pics; Quiet Temptation and Forever Primitive
  • March 2003 - CROSSROADS, Malta Today, includes group photo, with artists involved in collective show
  • August 2003 - PROFOUND EXPRESSIONS, Where Malta Magazine by William Galea, with 3 pics and cover; Late Spring, Forever Primitive and Torso and Quiet Temptation; front cover featured full page pic of Heavenbound
  • November 2003 - POETRY CONTEST WINNERS, Sunday Times, winner of 1st Prize for English poetry section from national competition
  • April 2006 - HERITAGE SIGHT, Grip Magazine (Malta International Airport) by Stanley Borg, regarding restoration works undergoing at the Palazzo Falson (Norman House), with 1 pic of self at work on Chapel fresco.
  • July 2006 - PHOTOGRAPH of the Private Chapel (with hand-painted ceiling designed by Damian Ebejer at Palazzo Falzon), The Times
  • August 2006 - SIX INCHES OFF THE GROUND, Grip Magazine (Malta International Airport), Damian Ebejer talks to Stanley Borg about his father, Francis Ebejer
  • November 2006 - MURAL, MURAL ON THE WALL, The Times Weekender by Stanley Borg who asks Damian Ebejer which is the fairest of his murals at Palazzo Falzon, with 1 pic
  • April 2007 - RUX GALLERY- AN INVITING PLACE FOR BROWSING, The Sunday Times by E. Fiorentino; an article about Damian Ebejer’s art gallery in Balzan
  • June 2007 - A BRUSH WITH FAME - Damian Ebejer, painter and poet, talks to Tanja Cilia, The Sunday Times with 1 pic of self
  • June 2007 - DAMIAN EBEJER… CHARGING UP THE LADDER, The Sunday Times by E. Fiorentino, with 1 pic; The Fall of Lucifer. Analysis about Damian Ebejer’s latest exhibition THE TALE OF CONSEQUENT PARALLELS
  • Spring 2007 - FRIEZES AND CEILINGS… Damian Ebejer is a skilled craftsman who restored the paintings on the walls and ceilings at Palazzo Falzon and created new ones, Flair Magazine, Souvenir Edition with 8 pics
  • 2008 - HONOURABLE MENTION (SILVER PALETTE NATIONAL COMPETITION 2008) as featured in the Focus Newsletter published by the Malta Society of Arts
  • November 2009 - EIGHT COLLABORATE, The Times, Marathon interpainting between eight artists. All proceeds of charity (Malta Hospice)
  • November 2011 - EVERYTHING AFFORDS A MOMENT’S INSPIRATION, The Sunday Times by Peter Farrugia; review for Damian Ebejer’s book of poems entitled The Divide Of Silence, 115pp. Midsea Books Ltd. “Ebejer’s exuberance and love for life shine through this collection…”
  • November 2011 - A RETROSPECTIVE EXHIBITION BY DAMIAN EBEJER, The Times; Preview to the “Never Mind The Dust” exhibition
  • November 2011 - NEVER MIND THE DUST -retrospective exhibition by DAMIAN EBEJER, The Malta Independent with 3 pics; Black Dawn, Birth of a Seed and Bottle Talk
  • November 2011 - WIRJA RETROSPETTIVA TA’ DAMIAN EBEJER, L-Orizzont with 1 pic; Life is Fragile
  • November 2011 - RETROSPECTIVE EXHIBITION BY DAMIAN EBEJER, Josanne Cassar interviewing Malta with 8 pics; Cleopatra’s Dream, Birth of a Seed, Autumn Fields No.1, Beach Alone, Coral Reef with Long Fish, Black Dawn, Bottle Talk and Connections
  • December 2011 - WIRJA TA’ PITTURA TA’ DAMIAN EBEJER, Kullħadd with 2 pics; Black Dawn and The Wandering Spirit
  • December 2011 - DAMIAN EBEJER- A RETROSPECTIVE EXHIBITION 17 YEARS IN THE MAKING, The Malta Independent on Sunday with 4 pics; Ecstasy of St. Theresa, The Wandering Spirit, The Breaking of Calypso’s Spell and Nature of Thought
  • October 2013 - UNIQUE PAINTINGS BY Francis Ebejer and his son Damian under one roof in Naxxar - THE SPIRIT OF COLOUR exhibition, L-Orizzont (Sunday) by Joseph Farrugia with 5 pics; History chasing its Own Tail (FE), Vanishing World (FE), Maltese Madonna (FE), Last Judgement (DE), Winter Blues (DE)
  • December 2013 - PAINTING BETWEEN PAST AND PRESENT, The Sunday Times by Peter Farrugia with 4 pics; Last Judgement, Even Fossils keep their Identity, Winter Blues and portrait pic
  • June 2014 - METAPHORICAL LANDSCAPES, evoking the soul of Malta’s landscapes, The Sunday Times by P. Farrugia with 4 pics; Pathway to the End, Beneath the Edge, Birth of a Seed and Me, you…and Them
  • January 2015 - EBEJER PAINTING AT THE BELGRAVIA GALLERY, LONDON, Marie Benoit cultural diary, Malta Independent on Sunday, feature with 3 pics; The Fragility of Peace, Belgravia Gallery front, group with painting; the artist together with Ms. Laura Walford (gallery director) and Mr. Prakash Ben Joshi (World Citizen Artist director of ethics)

Others

  • 1983 - Collection of poems published in a book entitled TALKS WITH SILENT PORTRAITS. The book includes 22 poems and has an introduction by Rose Lapira
  • 1995 - TVM interview on site at Palazzo Marina, Valletta, regarding the ceiling painting and restoration Ebejer was carrying out at the location
  • 1996 - local TV interview regarding Damian Ebejer’s preparations for his upcoming exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts, Valletta
  • 1996 - CONTEMPORARY CHRISTIAN ART IN MALTA featured with current c.v. and pic The Grotto… Devotion or Tradition
  • 1997 June - TVM, interviewed to talk about the Damian Ebejer Exhibition
  • 2002 - THE INTERNATIONAL DICTIONARY OF ARTISTS WHO PAINTED MALTA, De Agostini; featured with photograph of painting Salt Pans of the Mediterranean
  • 2002 July - TVM, interviewed to talk about his exhibition Strange Brew
  • 2003 - Winner 1st Prize Poetry in English - Ghaqda Poeti Maltin National Competition, with the poem Child Warrior
  • 2006 - CONTEMPORARY CHRISTIAN ART IN MALTA; featured with ongoing CV and pic Spilt wine at the Last Supper
  • 2006 April - TVM, interviewed to talk about the Ebejer exhibition
  • 2007 - GLORIOUS GOZO collective exhibition at Malta Hilton, with 1 pic Gozitana (donated to the Don Bosco Institute)
  • 2007 May - TVM produced a programme featuring the RUX ART GALLERY at Balzan (Malta) which was an art gallery venue opened by Damian Ebejer to exhibit his and other artists’ works to the public
  • 2007 June - TVM, interviewed to talk about his exhibition The Tale of Consequent Parallels
  • 2010 - CONSOLATION PRIZE (SILVER PALETTE NATIONAL COMPETITION)
  • 2011 February 22 - interview on restoration project site at Zebbug, Malta with Emmanuel Mallia for TVM programme Arti Madwarna
  • 2011 - THE DIVIDE OF SILENCE - a book of selected poems written by published by Midsea Publishers Ltd., Malta 115pp.
  • 2011 December - TVM interview regarding exhibition Never Mind the Dust
  • 2013 October - TVM interview regarding solo exhibition The Spirit of Colour at Vascas, Naxxar
  • 2014 - featured on the official World Citizen Artist’s finalist exhibition video during the launch at the Belgravia Gallery, London and on www.worldcitizenartist.com

Artist's note

“My art is a constant discovery of myself. It is the place I go to. I am not terribly interested in portraying the reality I see outside of myself; I search for a collective beauty. entangled with the ugly and chaotic in order to compose an unconscious recognition of fascinating order.”


See also