The youngest son of five of two Maltese immigrants that grew up in Swindon where his father worked as a sheet metal worker and his mother as
a cleaner. He painted
from a young age and was trained at Plymouth University by John Virtue,
a former student and assistant of the Frank Auerbach. His encouraging parents built him a studio at the bottom of the garden and he has been selling work since he was in school. After graduating from art school, he taught himself graphic design and moved to Brighton, so that he could earn a regular income, spending every spare minute painting in the evenings and on weekends in a rented studio shared between 20 other artists.
Micallef won international acclaim bursting onto the art scene in 2000, winning the second prize in the BP Portrait Award, exhibiting at The National Portrait Gallery. Each of his seven solo shows has been a sell-out, some before they have even opened. Since then he has exhibited and has collections all over the world. He has participated in group shows at the Tate Britain, The Royal Academy and the ICA in London.