Azure Watch: against standardisation

The ‘Azure Watch’ project sought to find an alternative – and hopefully, more sensitive and truthful – ways of commemorating Gozo’s Azure Window

Concluding today but continuing life as an exhibition at Dwejra Tower, the ‘Azure Watch’ project sought to find alternative – and hopefully, more sensitive and truthful – ways of commemorating Gozo’s Azure Window; as Italian artist Giuseppe Fanizza travelled to the island to participate in an residency that involved the input of local artist and residents. 

The participatory action, being part of the Artists’ Residency Programme in Gozo run by Spazju Kreattiv and the Valletta 2018 Foundation, began on September 11 and ends today, will showcase its results in an exhibition held at Dwejra Tower until October 29.

Speaking to MaltaToday, Fanizza – a photographer – said that the medium serves as “a perfect application for collective memory and community (and consequently territory) of narration,” when it comes to the Azure Window itself, adding that his collaborators on the project – Mary Attard, Johannes Buch and Andrew Pace – bring in a necessary local angle to the endeavour. 

“Since they are inhabitants of Malta, they add both their expertise and knowledge of the territory, thus preventing the risk of arriving at a detached or abstract result, which a foreign visiting artist like myself may risk producing if left to work alone...” 

And while the project sets out to combat the standardization that ensues from the tourist-inflected images of the Azure Window, Fanizza is quick to dismiss any grandiose implications in all of that. 

“Standardisation is inevitable in such an hyper-depicted subject,” Fanizza says, adding that being able to discuss with the Azure Window is all about with local participants was already a rewarding enough part of the exercise.  

“Azure Watch is not about some Don Quixote-esque fight against standardisation, and we don’t have any problem with tourists taking and creating their images of the Azure Window. But we are very much in favour of Gozitans creating their own images,” he adds.


The exhibition at Dwejra Tower will remain on display until October 29. Opening hours: 09:00 to 15:00 (Monday to Friday) and 10:30 to 15:00 (weekends). For more information on Azure Watch, log on to: