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The diverse fruits of Mallorca creativity – from Deià art to the island’s first children’s environmental festivalSeptember 14, 2019

It seems to me that the cultural aspect of Mallorca life is getting richer, with the number of intriguing choices on offer growing all the time. As we move into the gorgeous last month or so of summer on the island, Mallorca creativity continues to bear fruit in splendidly diverse ways.

 The 6th biannual George Sheridan Art Prize exhibition in Deià and the visionary NinGaia Festival at Can Dooit, Santa Margalida are both well worth your attention.

George Sheridan

The George Sheridan Art Prize

The George Sheridan Art Prize is held biannually at the Belmond La Residencia hotel’s Galeria Sa Tafona. Belmond La Residencia has been a keen supporter of the Deià artists pretty much since the hotel first opened its doors and up to 25 of the village’s finest take part in the competition for the prize.

This year, the competition is inspired by the 500th anniversary of the death of the great Leonardo da Vinci. Deià artists, including many who have previously shown their work at Sa Tafona, were invited to submit a personal interpretation of Da Vinci’s painting The Annunciation.

Focusing on one painting by a great master is an excellent way to inspire the Deià artists and for those who appreciate Mallorca creativity to get a sense of the sheer diversity of talent at work in and around the village.

This year there are 6 judges: an art historian/art critic and curator of exhibitions; an educator and curator of exhibitions for the Consell de Cultura in Palma; a painter/sculptor/artist in stained glass; a curator of exhibitions for the Fundació Coll Bardolet; a ceramic artist and art educator and a former professor of fine art who now paints. Judges spend 10 days viewing competition entries.

The name of the winner is announced at an award ceremony at La Residencia on Friday September 20.

I urge you to check out the exhibition, which will be open at Sa Tafona until 25 September. It’s the best possible way to get a sense of the Deià art scene and a feel for Mallorca creativity in one space. Sa Tafona at Belmond La Residencia is easy to find and the hotel itself very welcoming.

The NinGaia Festival – Mallorca creativity for children

Taking part in the first NinGaia Festival at the splendidly named Can Dooit, in the ancient town of Santa Margalida, is not just an excellent way to support the empowerment and freedom of expression of children in a safe space. It’s also a great reason to explore a part of Mallorca you might not otherwise visit, away from the touristic or more fashionable areas of the island.

I first heard about the festival from Deià’s own Daniel Alzamora-Dickin, who’s one of the organizers and thought it was an excellent idea. It’s all about using games and activities to enable children to appreciate environmental awareness, celebrate diversity, unlock creativity, build confidence and learn to take responsibility while having lots of fun.

NinGaia Festival

The festival’s serious purpose, as the organizers say, is to “focus on children and empower ideas about family and community, laying the foundation for the beliefs and courage children will need to adapt and face the challenges and changes that will arise as they grow on their path to adulthood.”

Read the full story of this flowering of Mallorca creativity here.

If you’d like to become actively involved in making NinGaia a success, find out how you can help here.

David Holzer

A freelance writer for many years, David is the author of a number of books and magazine articles, mainly on the subjects of the Beat writers and yoga. He is fascinated by the remarkably rich cultural history of Deia, from Robert Graves to the present day.

David also teaches yoga for writers.

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