My essentials: Mattia Scicluna’s cultural picks

93 | Mattia Scicluna, 23, propmaker, costume maker

1. Book

The latest book I read was Of Love and Other Demons by Gabriel García Márquez. I read it for my second-year unit, where I then had to take an extract from the book to make it as an artifact or prop. The book is quite striking in its descriptions and slightly problematic. But the way the author describes certain things in detail, although harrowing, paints an incredibly bright picture of what one is reading. Bringing that to life was a challenge but finally the result is one that I am very proud of.1. Film

2. Film

I rewatched Princess Mononoke also for a university submission. The world of Studio Ghibli movies is breath-taking and just so colourful and vibrant. Emulating that feeling of flying in this landscape and breathing in the smells of the food being served and diving in the overarching narratives in these movies is always a joy. Having to work with that as a base was not only fun, but it was extremely inspirational.

3. TV/Internet

I have been recently listening to The Broski Report by Brittany Broski, where apart from the laughs and silly motives, she delves deep into culture and art, and generally says things that are quite striking. Especially when she talks about the feeling of ‘home’ and what she had to give up to be where she is now. It really resonates with me, now that I live quite far away from my family and my friends. Not to say that I don’t appreciate my friends here, but it feels like I’m being pulled between two spaces at the same time, with a similar but different idea to what ‘home’ is.

4. Music

Cosmo Sheldrake was and still remains my favourite musician and artist. He uses sounds recorded from nature - birds, aquatic animals, or general sounds - and merges them together to create beautiful compositions. His lyrics sometimes take on a life of “nonsense poetry” and that also is a reminder that not everything has to be taken extremely seriously, even in an art form such as music. I resonate with this in my personal work.

5. Place

Last year I took a two-day break in Norway, where I stayed in a cabin away from civilisation, with no running water or food close by. I had to wake up at around 4am to chop wood to light the fire that was keeping me warm, and it reminded me to take it slow. Life can be so fast paced and non-stop. Being in the countryside with no one around you other than trees and the occasional horse whine reminded me to take it easy and just think about where I am now and how lucky I am.

Mattia Scicluna was financially aided by the Maltese Government’s Malta Arts Scholarship.