Mid-Century Chronicles: Curated Townhouse 

Jo Caruana – 5th November 2016

Curator Lisa Gwen has lovingly transformed this Hamrun townhouse by flooding it with light, enveloping it in art and, yet, staying completely true to its original design aesthetic.

“It took 17 months and 70 houses before I found this one – and I instantly knew this was it. I wanted a townhouse as I needed space for my collections but I also wanted lots of light, and that can be a challenging combination to find. This one fit the bill and I moved in in January 2014.

“The only structural changes I made were in the kitchen, where I opened up a stretch of wall to let lots of light in. It made a huge difference, and I think it really complements the new kitchen.

“Since then I have curated every aspect of the space. I didn’t rush into it, but lived and explored each room until I found the perfect spot for all the items I have collected over the years – some are gifts I was given for curating shows or presents from friends, others items I collected on my travels or at flea markets. I knew I wanted each one to find a space where it could be displayed and enjoyed.

“I really admire design from the middle of last century; there’s something very tangible about it. Modern furniture tends to leave me feeling cold – I like items with a history… I didn’t want to live in a showroom.

“The three-piece suit was my grandmother’s. When it was brought here I had no idea what colour it actually was, because she’d always kept it under leafy-green dust covers and we only used it once in a blue moon. I was mesmerised when I saw what was there! I love the colours, texture and softness, and regularly fall asleep on it. I am actually very sentimental, and it means a lot to have my nanna’s things around.

“Aside from the things I love, I also look around this space and see the people I love, including some who are no longer with us. A peacock chair in the office belonged to artist Isabelle Borg, and she gifted it to me before she passed away. I had curated a show for her and the painted suitcase on the stairs is another reminder of her spirit and work.

“Looking at my home now, it does feel like my own exhibition space and I have certainly ummed and ahed over the placing of every picture, photo and sculpture! Now it feels right, although I have no doubt that the house will continue to evolve as I continue to collect beloved pieces to bring into it.”

This is a snippet. Read the full feature on the latest issue of STYLE on Sunday.

Martina Said – 19th November 2016

Following years of abandonment, the Cittadella in Rabat, Gozo is finally basking in its restored glory. Architect Martin Xuereb, who worked on and implemented parts of the Master Plan for the site, divulges what went into this mammoth project amid expectations for a nomination as a candidate for UNESCO World Heritage status.

Jo Caruana – 29th October 2016

Mid-century furniture and design have experienced a definite resurgence, and design aficionados are taking notice. Thomas Camilleri, actor and creative executive at brand and design agency Switch, spent a year-and-a-half transforming this spacious third-floor apartment into an eclectic space with an authentic charm.

Sarah Micallef – 2nd October 2016

Consisting of nothing less than a complete makeover of the executive floor with no structural alterations whatsoever, the brief for this luxurious office and lounge space was an interesting one for Atelier Maison architects Paula Agius-Vadala' and Katja Abela Cassar, and one which they pulled off seamlessly.

Sarah Micallef – 11th September 2016

The restaurant design series takes a look at recently opened Brass & Knuckle in Naxxar – the design of which pairs fine textures and materials to achieve a cool, modern aesthetic.