Galeria Nuble, Santander, Cantabria
The connection between sex and violence is one that has received much sustained academic, sometimes salacious, even often prurient, treatment. Indeed in Maltese, and doubtless in many other languages, Bomba! refers both to a (destructive) bomb (i.e. a thing) and a (“hot”) sex-bomb (i.e. a person). That is common parlance. But the artist is exploring something more and this is the dangerously and disturbing aesthetization of military technology which is super-determined. And he is exploring it in a curious and challenging juxtaposition with lace, a product of his native land. Let us begin with the obvious visual connections: bomb or ammunition cones and breasts; the visual slippage between the phallus and the breast; the scatological wry humour (Bombs Away!) replicated in the messages written on bombs dropped from planes; the feminization of planes with their pin-up artistes in WWII, etc, etc. But there are other themes: the crystallized, almost diamond-like, construction of a modern jet fighter - recalling both the intense inward geological compression that forms diamonds and the outward fragmentation bombs that rip apart vulnerable flesh, bodies and lives; and the’ radarized’ planes where the silhouetted shapes are aestheticized and rendered almost lace-like.