To what do we owe the surfeit of exciting shows that opened all over the metro this week? It seems the ides of March has swept in
the muses, with the Silverlens group leading the way:
PATRICIA EUSTAQUIO DEAR SWEET FILTHY WORLD
Trust Patty Eustaquio to steep disaster and catastrophe with poetry and delicacy. Inspired in part by the tragedy of Typhoon Ondoy, an event she could only experience from far away, Patty puts together paintings and sculpture that invoke Mother Nature’s wrath. With the deft, feminine touch that has become her trademark, her pieces, especially her sculpture, simply astound with their originality and exquisite details.
At the foyer of the Silverlens space, a multi-faceted, jagged, rock-like formation greets us. Dear Sweet Filthy World IV reaches almost to the ceiling, and has been constructed completely from cardboard. The piece depicts a neoclassical fireplace trapped and overcome by claw-like stalactites. It seems as if natural stone has awakened in anger, attempting to bring what is man-made back into its depths.
This piece reminds me of Sleeping Beauty’s castle (the Walt Disney cartoon version) after Maleficent’s revenge, when everything had been put to sleep, the grounds had become overgrown, and dense foliage had eaten up the castle’s walls.
In the gallery’s main exhibit space, Dear Sweet Filthy World I and II, paintings both, hang on the walls. The first shows two dead birds, innocent victims of an oil spill. The second utilizes another Patty Eustaquio signature. She paints a collage on shaped canvas, recreating one of her paintings and a collection of shells from a Dutch still life.
What dominates the exhibit area are the three pieces that make up Dear Sweet Filthy World III. Constructed from felt that Patty had cut up like the doilies of pastillas de leche wrappers and then stiffened with epoxy, they resemble lifeboats that have been shredded to rags. Perhaps, like the birds in the painting, they had also gone through an oil spill. Or perhaps, like the cardboard mantel, Mother Nature has reclaimed them, slowly eating away until the shreds disintegrate, becoming like leaves that float along the water.
POSTLOCAL: PAINTING BRUIHN, NONA GARCIA, ANNA VARONA, CURATED BY ISA LORENZO
Four paintings comprise this show, an attempt to bring together three very different styles into one discourse.
Anna Varona has concentrated her recent efforts on doing sculpture and working with ceramics. I did not realize that she started her artistic practice as a painter.
Brian Uhing, aka Bruihn of Sagada, reportedly takes months to complete his finely-wrought, usually small-scale, pieces. He paints in the manner of Baroque masters, albeit with a surreal, usually humorous, twist. He portrays a serious Little Red Riding Hood with a painting inside her of the wolf cowering in the woods.
white, blank attracted the most attention on opening night. We haven’t seen work from Nona Garcia in a little more than a year. But this piece, done in shades of white, depicting the back of an albino girl, reminds us why we love Nona. In white, empty she paints an empty cupboard, continuing her fascination for bereft, abandoned spaces.
Patricia Eustaquio Dear Sweet Filthy World and Postlocal:Painting Bruihn, Nona Garcia, Anna Varona run from 17 March to 17 April 2010 at Silverlens and SLab, 2F YMC Bldg, 2320 Pasong Tamo Extension, Makati City. Phone (632)8160044 or visit http://www.silverlensphoto.com or http://www.slab.silverlensphoto.com