Malta Libraries – Lecture

Finding Prints and Drawings at the National Library 

Art collectors’ libraries throughout Europe from the 16th to the 19th centuries contained bound volumes of prints and drawings. Given that books of many art-collecting knights of the Order of St John passed to the Order’s library, one expects that the National Library of Malta has among its shelves such volumes. A look at the library’s catalogues reveals what prints one can encounter. Important printmakers such as Stefano Della Bella, Jacques Callot, Giovanni Volpato and Francesco Bartolozzi are listed. Drawings are harder to find. This paper will outline the methodology employed to find these works. It will present highlights from the collection, who owned such works, and their significance for the history of collecting prints and drawings in Malta.

KRYSTLE FARRUGIA is a Curator at MUŻA, the Malta National Community Art Museum. Among her varied responsibilities is the study of the museum’s old master prints and drawings, a subject in which she specialises. She is a PhD candidate at the Institute of English Studies, School of Advanced Study at the University of London where she studies print and book history and collecting, specifically Count Saverio Marchese’s print collection at the Mdina Cathedral Museum. Krystle has two M.A.s, one in art history concentrating on Marchese as an art historian, and another in literary tradition and popular culture focusing on book illustration. 

  • This lecture is the last lecture in the Malta Libraries’ Public Lecture Series for 2022-2023 ‘Created to Inspire: 500 years of artistic splendour in Malta’. 
  • This lecture will be held at the National Library of Malta, Valletta and starts at 18:30hrs sharp.
  • Items from the national collection relating to the subject in question will be on display. 
  • Admission is free and no prior booking is necessary.
  • Lecture will be delivered in English.

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