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GEMA – Gibraltar Exhibitions of Modern Art

GEMA – Gibraltar Exhibitions of Modern Art Image

GEMA, Gibraltar Exhibitions of Modern Art

Opening Times

Winter
Monday to Friday 11.00am to 3.00pm,  (late opening on Tuesday and Thursday to 6.00pm)

Summer
Monday to Friday 10.00am to 3.00pm,

 

Contact us
Email: gema@culture.gov.gi
Telephone Number: (+350) 20041826

Address
Montagu Bastion, Line Wall Road, Gibraltar GX11 1AA

 

The Gibraltar Exhibitions of Modern Art Gallery, GEMA, was officially inaugurated in November 2015. This unique gallery space, located in Montagu Bastion,

Line Wall Road was re-dedicated in October 2018, with the aim of celebrating the work of Gibraltarian artists and showcasing artworks from the Gibraltar Government’s Art Collection. Prior to its conversion, the historical Montagu Bastion had been used as a store for many years.

The Bastion’s original stone walls create a distinctive backdrop for the collection of art, which includes paintings, sculptures, video, installation, and photography. This heritage site not only serves to showcase modern art but has also proved to be a popular cultural hub. This venue has played host to many cultural functions and events, to include fashion and dance workshops, life drawing sessions, yoga classes, performances and even theatre productions, with the space transformed for each occasion. Artists have also been offered the opportunity to showcase their works within the bastion in a bid to promote and provide a platform for up-and-coming artists and to continue to put the gallery on the artistic map.

Gibraltar Cultural Services continuously works to promote the artworks on display at the gallery with tours for school children and other activities, with a strong emphasis on social media content to engage the public.

GEMA is accessible, inclusive and entrance is free.

Montagu Bastion: A Brief History

The Fortress of Gibraltar has evolved over centuries, planned, designed and redeveloped by the Moors, Spanish and the British. The city walls and bastions have developed from bow and arrow defences to gunpowder, muskets and cannon shot.

This bastion is no different, having been built on the remains of the Spanish defences and developed by the British. The site was named Montagu Bastion, after Ralph Montagu, Marquis of Monthermer, made 1st Duke of Montagu in 1705, a year after the capture of Gibraltar. The Bastion has since been upgraded several times. During the 20th century, Montagu Bastion served as an anti-air- craft position. Four 3-inch anti-aircraft guns were installed in 1931. Further guns were installed during the Second World War. The architecture of the Bastion remains largely the same as in WWII, as you explore the art you can appreciate the original historical walls, floors, and quirks which now create an atmospheric space for works of art.

Christian Hook

The first vault in the Gallery is dedicated to Gibraltarian artist Christian Hook. Christian was named Sky Arts Portrait Artist of the Year in 2014 and has since seen plenty of success and acclaim. His portfolio of work related to the series included a commission portrait of former two-time world champion boxer Amir Khan and a portrait of acclaimed actor Sir Ian McKellen. His prize was a £10,000 commission to paint a portrait of award-winning actor Alan Cumming for The Scottish National Portrait Gallery.

Other celebrities have since also sat for the artist, with Christian receiving the Freedom of the City of Gibraltar in 2017. Christian studied illustration at Middlesex University, London before establishing a career as an illustrator for Disney and later lecturing in illustration at the Royal College of Art.

Winner of the inaugural Clarendon Fine Art award, his interest lies in depicting motion, time and the moments that occur between events: “We are always on the move, if not physically, mentally.” GEMA is privileged to be able to exhibit some of Christian’s earlier works which form part of the Government’s Collection, as well as some of his more recent prints.

The Kishin Alwani Foundation

The Kishin Alwani Foundation was established in 1996 by Kishin Alwani and is a registered charity in Gibraltar. The Foundation’s charitable objectives are wide, building a significant profile across sectors in Gibraltar, including the arts, education, and assistance with dementia and the challenges of old age. Gibraltar Cultural Services is delighted that the Arts in Gibraltar have been able to benefit from the Trust and the collection on show is representative of this.

This vault is dedicated to the winners of awards sponsored by The Kishin Alwani Foundation, with works dating back to 2005. This includes entries from the Spring Visual Arts and The Young Art competitions. The sponsorship aims to reach far beyond the winning artwork on the day, empowering artists to be confident and continue their journey in the world of creativity wherever it may take them.

The artworks on display demonstrate an array of styles and materials, which come together to create an exciting exhibition space, with paintings, sketches, and mixed media pieces just some of the exhibits.

Gibraltar Government Collection

The Exhibition at GEMA includes prior winners of the annual competitions organised by GCS on behalf of the Ministry of Culture. The International Art Competition has been running for over 50 years, a highlight for locals which continues to attract participation from artists in Spain and the UK as well as further afield.

The Spring Visual Arts Competition is a popular event for local artists. It has seen changes over the years with individual prizes introduced in 2015 recognising different artforms to include photography, sculpture and video, in keeping with the Government of Gibraltar’s commitment to promote contemporary art in Gibraltar and abroad.

Established in 2009, The Young Art Competition gives young artists an exclusive platform and opportunity to exhibit their work and show off their skills and talent.

The venue and the works showcased within GEMA are a treat for all visitors and users alike.

 

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