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MERCURY RISING - An Urban Transformation by Zaha Hadid Architects

Valletta Contemporary is pleased to announce, “Mercury Rising”, an exhibition showcasing the profound impact of Zaha Hadid Architects on the urban landscape of St Julian's. Running from May 24, 2024, to July 13, 2024, this exhibition highlights the architectural innovation and community transformation brought about by the Mercury Towers.

Mercury Towers stand as an architectural impression, transcending conventional boundaries and redefining the skyline with its avant-garde design. Its presence has catalyzed a metamorphosis of the surrounding landscape, breathing new life into the neighborhood, making it a more welcoming environment for families and the community. Through a lens of innovation, Mercury Tower emerges as a beacon of progress and community cohesion.

The exhibition features evocative black-and-white large-format analogue photography by Julian Vassallo. His series, "Mercury Rising," documents the transformation of one of Malta's most fast-paced and commodified urban areas. Vassallo’s contemplative and demanding medium contrasts with the rapid urban changes, allowing viewers to suspend preconceived notions and abstract the architectural qualities of Mercury Tower, leading to a deeper understanding of its transformative impact.

“The series of photographs taken at different stages of the construction of Mercury Towers follows their assertion on the existing built environment by scrutinizing some of their most tangible qualities, such as their engineered detailing and complex forms," says Vassallo. "As a result of the process, unexpected and personal images emerge, constantly surpassing their origins similarly to the ‘authentically poetic image’ theorized by G. Bachelard, emerging from a form of difficult transcendence of knowledge.”

Zaha Hadid Architects, the visionary force behind the Mercury project, are also contributors to this exhibition, providing insight into the design and development of Mercury Tower. As lead architects, their innovative approach has not only reshaped the skyline but also fostered a sense of community and progress in St Julian's.

“Mercury Rising" invites the community to explore the transformative power of innovative design. There is no admission fee to enter the exhibition. Join us at Valletta Contemporary to witness the intersectionof art, architecture, and community through the lens of one of the most groundbreaking architectural firms of our time.

Photography by Julian Vassallo

For further information contact Chloe Portelli, Marketing and Events Manager at Mercury Towers or visit


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