Now running its sixth edition, the MCAST ICA Festival provides a platform for creative students to display their work while simultaneously meeting with industry stakeholders. It will primarily feature work by the final-year BA students from MCAST's Institute for the Creative Arts. This will not only give career advice to MCAST's prospective students but will also act as a link between the institute and the local art and design community by displaying all of the work at the MCAST ICA Festival.Read More
It is with pride that we write this message to all students, staff members and other stakeholders who are directly or indirectly participating in this sixth edition of the MCAST ICA Festival. At the heart of each edition is the creative spirit of our final-year degree students who take part in such an exhibition of talent and resourcefulness. MCAST has become synonymous with opportunity and prosperity.
Any student who has completed secondary education has an opportunity to work and learn at this College in a wide variety of subjects under six overarching sectors namely information technology, the applied sciences, engineering and transport, community services, business management and commerce, and the creative arts. All qualifications and work experiences or work placements lead to the prospect of a career or job openings. From surveys, over 92% of our students find jobs or careers in the areas of their studies. It is to the credit of our hard working management and lecturing staff members that our students can excel in their talent.
The MCAST ICA Festival is an exemplary platform. This year’s theme Embrace Liminality is undoubtedly an interesting challenge for students to move from the periphery to the centre of their creative talent and display the limitless boundaries of their applied thoughts and the medium of their choice. Liminality is a word used to describe the psychological process of transitioning across boundaries and borders. Coming from the Latin word “limen” which means threshold, it is literally the edge separating one space from another. Metaphorically speaking it is that space in the wall where people move from one room to another.
This Festival is indeed the physical space provided by Spazju Kreattiv where students can project their creativity and expect to move to the next step of their limitless and original inspiration. In various forms, our students’ ingenuity is a pleasure to watch, admire and appreciate. It is just more than visual. One could sense in all artefacts and displays the youngish soul, bodies and hands that experiment, dare and accomplish works that provoke, talk and elicit new margins of exploration and new investigations.
That we are proud of this talent is a given fact. However, we are more than that. We are confident that our students are in good hands; that their talent is being drawn out in the most inspired manner possible; that the hard work at the Institute for the Creative Arts (ICA) augurs well for creativity in Malta. As a public institution, we will continue to be inspired by our strategic objective 2 in the College’s Plan 2022-2027 to strengthen quality and relevance to enhance the students’ learning experience. This festival fulfils in no small measure this objective.
Professor Ian Refalo
Professor Joachim James Calleja
While celebrating the work of students in their final year, this year’s edition of the MCAST ICA Festival, which bears the title Embrace Liminality, also commemorates Donald Friggieri’s contribution to education in the creative arts. Earlier this year Donald Friggieri, the first Director of what was previously known as MCAST’s Institute of Art and Design, sadly passed away. Nonetheless, his legacy lives on through lecturing staff at ICA who were former colleagues and/or students of his, and who now equally passionately pass on their love for and appreciation of the creative arts.
As a specialist in three-dimensional design he would certainly have embraced liminality as part of the design process, an experience here most directly reflected in the areas of Fashion, Product, and Spatial Design. Nonetheless, it also relates to the creative approach of other disciplines including Creative Media Production, Fine Art, Game Art & Visual Design, Graphic Design, Interactive Media, Performing Arts and Photography which, together with programmes in Journalism, Cultural Heritage Skills and Graphic Printing, are offered at ICA.
Thanks go to all industry shareholders who have supported learners in their journeys over the years. Furthermore, special thanks go to Arts Council Malta and Spazju Kreattiv for their continuous support and contribution. Moreover, the extraordinary dedication and commitment of ICA staff and students, together with that of MCAST stakeholders, are also warmly acknowledged.
Dr Martina Caruana
One of Spazju Kreattiv’s main remits as the National Centre for Creativity is to act as a hub for emerging artists to harness their talents and skills within the sector. In this framework, the annual MCAST ICA Festival seeks to provide the needed resources and professional expertise for students to excel in their research and presentation of their work.
This process comprises regular meetings between the staff of both entities to establish a platform where students are empowered to develop a body of work that promotes innovation and creativity. The showcase is not only a series of individual exhibits but, most importantly, a collective effort by all those involved to produce an event that promotes excellence.
Through the process, the Festival serves as an opportunity for participants to become better accustomed to the requirements needed to succeed in the sector while giving the space for them to meet other peers and enhance their network. Such a platform not only introduces the public to the potential emerging creatives but also allows the participants to strengthen their career trajectory within the creative sector and beyond.
Within such a context of encounters and exchanges, Spazju Kreattiv is proud to host another edition of the MCAST ICA Festival. We look forward to strengthening such collaboration for the years to come and for Spazju Kreattiv to continue being a champion for social dialogue and creative expression.
Mr Daniel Azzopardi
Spazju Kreattiv Artistic Director