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PRESS RELEASE BY THE MINISTRY FOR JUSTICE, CULTURE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT: Maltese artistic crib to be exhibited at Christmas Village in Vienna

The Maltese artistic crib will be exhibited in Vienna, after being on display in Vatican Square in 2016, Manger Square in Bethlehem in 2017, and Valletta in 2018 as part of the European Capital of Culture celebrations. The crib will be placed in the Vienna University Campus’ Christmas Village. 

Minister for Justice, Culture and Local Government Owen Bonnici referred to the fact that once again we are working towards exporting our culture. “This is another great opportunity to showcase the ability of Maltese artists in a central location which is visited by 600,000 Viennese people every year and thousands more of other locals and tourists which visit this Christmas Market, which is one of the largest Markets in Austria. This is all in line with our strategy to further strengthen culture diplomacy, whilst also providing a wider international platform to our artists.”
Owen Bonnici also announced that KorMalta, which is our country’s first national choir, will be singing traditional Christmas tunes during the Maltese Crib inauguration.
This time around, the mounting of the crib was structurally modified from that of the previous three years, due to Vienna’s environment and weather, therefore, most original statues which were created and designed by Gozitan artist Manwel Grech have been retained.
The part depicting the nativity has been recreated and was given a more traditional Maltese crib look. The cave was designed and manufactured by Jennings Falzon with the help of Norman Hill. They both worked under the supervision and assistance of Culture Directorate officials, led by Emanuel Vella and Architect Paul Buhagiar and Herbert Debattista.
The Maltese crib will be inaugurated on the 15th of November by the President of Malta George Vella, in the presence of Minister for Justice, Culture and Local Government Owen Bonnici. Dr Michael Ludwig, Mayor of Vienna, is also expected to attend. This initiative was also possible thanks to the assistance of Natasha Meli-Daudey, Malta’s Ambassador to Austria.