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The locality of St. Julian’s officially has a brand new landmark – and it’s a towering piece of street art turning a plain apartment block’s party wall into a colourful creation by a renowned local artist.

After years of planning and months of preparation, the mural, named STJ Canvas, had been initially launched as an online competition looking for artists to put forward their vision.

Eventually, winner James Micallef Grimaud was given the sprawling blank canvas and he opted to create “a balance between nature and man-made structures through an artistic context”.

“In this mural, I decided to take on a more naturalistic approach and made use of some of the most colourful migratory birds which visit Malta yearly. Some of the birds I’ve chosen have also been spotted in the valleys of St Julians and Pembroke,” artist and muralist Micallef Grimaud explained.

A total of 500 cans, including varnishes, were needed to complete the piece, and around 300 hours were spent bringing the whole thing to life.

From Maltese symbols like the luzzu and the gardjola to “some of the most colourful migratory birds which visit Malta yearly and are spotted in the valleys of St Julian’s and Pembroke”, the six-storey piece creates “a juxtaposition of these birds with the modern development around the area”.

Given the full development permission from the Planning Authority, the glorious new landmark will hopefully be the first of more to follow, with many people already saying they wished similar works are conducted in their localities.

Meanwhile, all the neighbours in the area were very cooperative throughout the entire process, with many of them lining the street earlier today to watch on during the final rigorous process of removing some eight storeys worth of scaffolding.

Stay tuned for even more awesome initiatives by the people behind STJ Canvas, with plans already in the works to “give back to the community”. In the meantime, check out STJ Canvas’ website to learn more!

Originally Published on Lovin Malta