Il-Filliera tal-Ikkundannati (2020-2021) by Katel Delia was exhibited during ‘How do you feel?’ collective exhibition at The Mill, curated by Elyse Tonna and part of the SPRING Artistic Programme by the Gabriel Caruana Foundation.

This photographic series by Katel Delia captures, documents and contemplates a group of trees that lined Mdina Road, Attard and that were uprooted and felled in the name of urbanization and road widening. These trees spurred a number of national protests in favour of safeguarding of trees, Malta’s natural environment and wellbeing. These trees were part of Katel’s childhood and part of the history of Malta, planted decades ago. Katel muses on the romantic nature of avenues that carry us to our destination, sheltering us from the hottest of days, which make us shudder slightly on full moon nights. Our contemporary society runs at full speed and prefers multi-lane roads which are bare, full of concrete and straight.

Katel photographed each tree one by one, taking the time to contemplate their forgotten singularity. Their sculptural silhouettes shaped by the weather and time are frail, majestic, united, atypical and magnificent. By giving a Maltese name for each of them, a name of a Sainte or Saint, the trees receive the status of canonization. Do we need this canonization to finally protect them and the other? To adore them? To be aware of the importance of each tree?