The narrow streets of iż-Żebbuġ hide this gem of a private art gallery tucked away in a traditional 350-year-old Gozitan village house. Run by Berlin-born artist, Jörg Böttcher, who has spent some twenty years living and working in Gozo, the gallery offers visitors a marvellous welcome into a private world of colour and calm.
Knock on the weathered wooden door with a bronze dolphin knocker and you are likely to hear a cheerful “Please enter! Keys are in the lock”. Within is a beautiful courtyard and a traditional Gozitan home full of contemporary art and a joyful creative atmosphere. Make time to chat with the work’s creator and you will be rewarded with insights into art, life and Gozo – and the Blues. Amongst the paintings are several classic guitars, evidence of Jorg’s other passion.
Jorg’s philosophy is simple: “There’s nothing more beautiful than sitting in front of an empty canvas, closing your eyes, feeling the sunlight and the salty wind coming from the sea, breathing the smell of the herbal garden nearby and listening to your favourite music at the same time … to give yourself access to your innermost thoughts and feelings. And then, after a while, opening your eyes, choosing the first colour and starting to paint. It may sound a bit corny but I believe in these being good ingredients for honest art”.
Gozo is Jorg’s inspiration. The island worked its spell on him back in 1978: “This incredible light and this world of colours had me captivated”. He works in a variety of styles and in his farmhouse gallery, abstract paintings hang alongside photography, landscapes and architectural compositions. They are unified only by his powerful play of colours.