The 28th edition of Malta is coming to an end. During the last 10 days we attended over 200 plays, concerts, debates and urban actions. We wish to thank our audience for their participation in the Festival! You were numerous, we shared moments of emotion, happiness and exhilaration.
This year we made a leap of faith with the Belgian collective Needcompany, we examined how art can unite despite divisions and differences, how it can build a dialogue. We asked about the role of the artist in the modern world. As a part of our Leap of Faith Idiom, prepared by our curators – Jan Lauwers, Grace Ellen Barkey and Maarten Seghers, we took part in 21 events. We had the opportunity to see the much discussed play War and Turpentine based on a novel by Stefan Hertmans, to take part in the world premiere of the Concert by a Band Facing the Wrong Way as well as the unique, premiere concert of Needcompany – O, Tomorrow's Parties (or Fun is Politics). "The stage images – the space management, the movement, the costumes and the stage design – are thought through and through. At times they illustrate things literally, at times they resort to metaphor", writes Anna Solak about the play War and Turpentine on kultura.poznan.pl.
The theme of this year's Malta Generator is Doubting Localness. Thanks to the curators – Joanna Pańczak and Agnieszka Różyńska -– we examined the first Poznań social welfare estates and local reconstructions, and we discussed the problems of people escaping military conflicts. The Generator program included the Human Mic conversations and reportage photography exhibitions: Ahmed Deeb's Third safe country and Blank Space which examined the boarder between freedom of speech and hate speech. "The anonymity of the participants of the project and their stories helped those who would not have the strength to articulate their opinion in other circumstances", wrote Julia Niedziejko and Wojciech Kobus in their review of Blank Space on the "Czas Kultury" website.
This year's festival also featured the premiere of Messiahs (or if there is nothing left for us to believe in, may we undermine something that we could believe in again) – a theatre coproduction of Malta Festival and Teatr Zagłębie in Sosnowiec directed by Aneta Groszyńska, with dramaturgy by Jan Czapliński and Marcin Kącki. "(...) critical theatre of with left-wing sentiments instead of giving cause for reflection through provocations which are often misconstrued, opens up to dialogue. Before it has been stuck and spinning its wheels.", wrote Jacek Cieślak about the premiere in "Rzeczpospolita".
The festival would not take place if it wasn't for our voluntary workers. They worked at the office, the information points and the venues of the festival events. They checked tickets and informed the viewers about the Malta activities. We wish to thank the group of more than100 people, who were involved in the organisation of this year's Malta!
The festival featured over 350 artists from 17 countries. We wish to thank the artists and, particularly the curators – Jan Lauwers, Grace Ellen Barkey and Maarten Seghers – as well as the other members of Needcompany, who engaged us in the discussion about modern art and enjoyed the festival events with us.
We received financial support from: the President of Poznań Jacek Jaśkowiak and Poznań City Hall, the Wielkopolskie Voivodship Marshal Marek Woźniak and the Wielkopolskie Voivodship Self government, the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, as well as the Culture Minister of Flanders Sven Gatz, the government of Flanders and the representation of the government of Flanders in Poland. Thank you for your help and presence at the festival.
We are also grateful for the help we received from our sponsors: Kulczyk Investments, Grupa Ciech, International Poznań Fair, Tempus Leasing and Robot Gentleman.
We wish to thank the co-organisers and our partners for the co-creation of festival events, as well as for making venues available and for presenting own projects as a part of Malta: The French Institute in Poland, British Council, Adam Mickiewicz Institute, Aula Artis, School of Form, Collegium Da Vinci, Art Stations Foundation by Grażyna Kulczyk, Centrum Kultury Zamek, Estrada Poznańska, Galeria Miejska Arsenał, Pawilon, the city of Sosnowiec and Teatr Zagłębia in Sosnowiec, Polski Teatr Tańca, Scena Robocza, Teatr Nowy, Teatr Polski and the Academy of Music in Poznań.
We wish to thank the local, national and international media for their announcements, coverage and reviews, as well as the journalists who came to Malta Festival Poznań. Special thanks goes to our media patrons: TOK FM, TVN Fabuła and Arte po polsku, Gazeta Wyborcza, AMS, Aktivist, Empik, Notes na 6 Tygodni, Didaskalia, Czas Kultury, Sens, Zwierciadło, Onet.
All our communication needs were catered for by Toyota Bońkowscy as well as Promobil Fleet – the logistics partners of the festival. Our extraordinary tote-bags and "bum-bags" were sown by the company Kuluza, and the fabrics that adorned Liberty Square for 10 days were provided by Dekoma.