SORĠI: Recycling Construction Waste To Create Art Installations


Talk about excess? Malta has seen massive infrastructural changes over the last few years. Tall towers are now commonplace, and the buzzing sound of construction, along with the sight of the cranes that come with it has now become part of our lives.

Enter ‘art’, and one of its purposes – that is the creation of something beautiful from all that might be deviant, ugly, or unwanted. The research project SORĠI is doing just that, essentially by using leftover construction material.

Public art installations

SORĠI uses construction waste to create interactive outdoor furniture for Maltese public spaces. The idea behind this is to get a counter-beneficiary use from the ugly concrete, as well as from other materials used in modern construction such as glass and marble.

Replica of twin 19th-century houses in Spinola Bay

Gadgets has spoken with SORĠI architect and founder, Anna Horvath, who explained how the architectural landscape has changed over the last decade. Buildings have been demolished or altered in a way that doesn’t necessarily respect their original values. 

Anna told us what SORĠI installations can offer to the community:

I believe that our creations can become public art installations in many localities. In this way, we will be preserving the essence of the buildings, find ways to put the increasing amount of construction waste to good use, and create site-specific installations. While the local community can use benches in public spaces, for instance, they would also serve as contemporary art installations. I believe this has the potential to put Malta on the design map while enriching our public spaces.

– Anna Horvath – founder of SORĠI

Reminiscing glorious buildings

Ta’ Rita (Għar Lapsi), Roxy Cinema (Birkirkara), Sun City Palais (Marsascala), Marsa seafront, Twin 19th Century houses (Spinola Bay), Dolores (Żejtun) – these are the first official title installations by SORĠI – and they are all symbolic of typical Maltese structures that were or will be lost forever.

Memories of ‘Ta’ Rita’ in Għar Lapsi

By means of their installations, SORĠI invites people to ponder on what is being lost along the way, while at the same time looking at what can be done to safeguard what’s left.

Extending the network

As a way forward for SORĠI, Anna explained that the plan is to collaborate with developers to be able to source leftover or dumped construction waste. This would then be able to be reused to create outdoor furniture for public spaces. SORĠI doesn’t exclude the possibility of also working with private clients who would be interested in creating a memory token of their former buildings.

Do you think pleasant architectural aesthetics should be given top priority in Malta’s planning and construction strategies?