Nimxu Mixja

Walking the right to the city


The interdisciplinary project Nimxu Mixja (Let’s take a walk) was created with and for the Year 5 students at St Theresa College, Birkirkara Primary School, Malta, in collaboration with creative practitioners Kristina Borg and Raffaella Zammit and the Gabriel Caruana Foundation. The project introduced the students to walking practice as an artistic form. It also fostered a sense of community and a deeper understanding of their town, Birkirkara. The children were encouraged to rethink how space is used and to exchange their ideas, hopes and solutions on where they live, play and study. Furthermore, the project aimed to present an alternative to the car culture that is prevalent in society today and which hinders a sense of ownership and community.

Through walking, the students explored and interacted with the urban environment in the vicinity of their school. The students tried out different methods of mapping the walks, while discovering the place using different senses (sight, hearing, smell, touch). This led to a better understanding of their surroundings, cultural background and traditions where human activity is realised. Walking practice affects one’s well-being as it shapes the relationship and interaction of body, landscape (urban and/or rural), action and site within a specific time and space. By analysing the present without forgetting the past, the students reflected on Birkirkara’s changing landscape in relation to its memory, geography, architecture, heritage as well as its hidden and neglected spaces.

The walks were processed further through drawing, language, creative writing, mathematical and social studies lessons. The project culminated in a final community walk – open for all students, relatives and the Birkirkara community – and an exhibition displaying the students’ process work at The Mill – Art, Culture and Crafts Centre, run by the Gabriel Caruana Foundation.

In 2019 Nimxu Mixja was invited to present at the Walking Practices / Walking Art / Walking Bodies International Encounters/Conference in Prespes, Greece, organised by the Department of Fine and Applied Arts of the University of Western Macedonia, Greece. A paper is also published in the conference proceedings publication: 

Borg, K. & Zammit, R. (2020). Nimxu Mixja – Walking as an art practice and beyond. In G. Vermeire & Y. Ziogas (Eds.), Walking practices, Walking Art, Walking bodies – Conference Proceedings (pp. 507-517). University of Western Macedonia, School of Fine Arts, Greece.

Nimxu Mixja was supported by Arts Council Malta’s Kreattiv fund.

In 2020 Nimxu Mixja was awarded Arts Council Malta’s Premju għall-Arti (Art Award) as ‘Best project in the community’ and nominated as ‘Best work for young audiences’.