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GEMA relaunches, showcasing Gibraltar’s modern art

Photo by Johnny Bugeja

Montagu Bastion’s GEMA – Gibraltar’s Exhibition of Modern Art, was once again the setting for another rededication cultural event this week. This time out in the open in the midday sun. A power cut meant Culture Minister John Cortes, flanked by Chief Executive at Gibraltar Cultural Services, Seamus Byrne, and the always faithful supporter of local art and artists, Kishin Alwani, made his rededication speech just outside its doors. 

Inside there are over 70 works on show – all works belonging to the Gibraltar Government Art Collection: paintings, prints, photographs, sculptures and vide installations. 

“Today we relaunch this extraordinary space with a new curation of art works, paying tribute to Christian Hook and to the Kishin Alwani Foundation. Christian, we all know is a prolific artist who has gone on to great things in the world of creativity and who will continue to inspire many budding artists,” said the Culture Minister. 

Moments earlier CEO at GCS, Seamus Byrne, had also paid tribute to the artist referring to him as “Gibraltar’s superb ambassador”. When working on the new look gallery with the GCS team, he added, the importance of giving prominence to Hook’s work was very clear in a new curation of the space. 


The first gallery at GEMA is now dedicated in its entirety to the work of this most distinguished international artist of the day, Christian Hook. With some of his early works and a new selection of prints recently acquired for the Gibraltar Art Collection on display. 

The gallery is also showcasing the winning artworks and all prizes sponsored by the Kishin Alwani Foundation over the years. 

Mr Byrne spoke of the decades of “altruistic support” for the Arts by Mr Alwani and the Alwani Foundation.

The Minister John Cortes, told Mr Alwani “there is nobody else like you”, as he emphasised the Government’s gratitude and that of the local artistic community for his constant support over the decades and its continuance into the future.

The Minister then gave an assurance that Gibraltar Cultural Services would continue to work with the Department of Education and the Gibraltar Youth Service, to ensure that students and young people continue to visit, enjoy and use the facilities at GEMA. 

“We will be working with the Fine Arts Association and other cultural entities to make certain this space and its potential is fully utilised. In autumn we will once again welcome local artists to exhibit their work in this wonderful cultural and heritage venue,” he said. 

Other works on display at GEMA are the past winners of competitive exhibitions held locally annually. 

GEMA opens daily, Monday to Friday, 11am to 3pm. 

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