Artist of the Month March 2023
Adam Muscat is an interdisciplinary artist whose practice explores identity, melancholy and metaphysical energy.
Adam Muscat is an interdisciplinary artist based in London. Inspired by personal memories and the Jewish Kabbalistic teachings, Adam works intuitively to create expressive, textured works using charcoal, mud, and oil paint. His technique is highly unusual: it involves applying a layer of oil paint to the canvas, followed by a layer of mud mixed with adhesive once the paint is dry. Adam then uses this ‘mud ground’ to draw on, using charcoal for darker marks and scraping away the brown mud to reveal lighter highlights. “I’m particularly interested in using mud - something people are slightly repulsed by - as a material to create experiential spaces,” Adam explains.
Adam often combines 2D paintings and drawings with sound, scents, and film to build multimedia installations. Adam’s awareness of space and light was honed during his BA in Architecture at Central Saint Martins; this sensitivity to the experience of space remained a key concern for Adam when he returned to CSM to do a masters in Fine Art from 2020 to 2022. “I don’t want my work to be just a picture on the wall,” he says, “I wanted it to be a voice within the space.”
As an emerging fine artist, Adam’s first public exhibition was the group show ‘The Will To Form’ at the Copeland Gallery in Peckham, London, in February 2022. It was a groundbreaking opportunity for Adam, who felt that the 5-day residency followed by the exhibition led to him choosing to work more with mud. The installation consisted of seven canvases depicting the seven shattered vessels from which imbalance and evil entered the world according to the Kabbalah. Adam then filled the gallery space with mud infused with theme-scented essential oil, and placed a stool for viewers to sit encircled by the paintings. The installation created a sense of spiritual calm, and captured “the beauty within darkness.”
This year, Adam is excited to push the boundaries of mud as an artistic material: “I’m amazed at how versatile mud is, and I want to experiment with different amounts of earth, water, and concrete to create free-standing mud sculptures.”
Isle of Mind (detail)
Angel of Veil (trailer)