Juvenal Sanso’s Rare and Essential works (September 2013)



In celebration of Juvenal Sanso’s 65th year in art, Fundacion Sanso  calendared an exhibit of rare Sanso works from the 1980s and the 1990s titled “Rare and Essential Sanso”. The special event for the artist’s friends and collectors was set last September 12, Thursday 6:00 p.m. at the Manila A and B rooms of the Shangri la Makati Hotel.


Sanso, born in 1928 in Reus, Spain migrated to the Philippines with his parents and elder sister when he was four years old. He grew up and studied Fine Arts at the University of the Philippines as well as at the University of Sto. Tomas. DSC_0088 

DSC_0092 Sanso won the Grand Prize in the Art Association of the Philippines watercolor competition in 1950 for his work Incubus” and repeated this in the oil competition in 1951 for his work “The Sorcerer”.


After the two back to back wins, Sanso left for further studies at the Academia di Belle Arti in Rome and at the L’Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux Arts.DSC_0101

DSC_0105 Sanso lived in various part of Paris for over five decades, his last address being at a penthouse studio at the Rue Colonels Renard at the 17th arrondisement.  DSC_0112

Although Sanso decided to come back home and live in his beloved Manila, this show was a homecoming for these rare works which formed part of his personal collection and which the artist has only recently been brought back from abroad.


September 12 was also a joyous occasion as it provided an opportunity for the artist to introduce Fundacion Sanso to his public.  DSC_0125

Fundacion Sanso will be the institution that will establish art scholarship programs for deserving artists.DSC_0148 DSC_0216  It will also be undertaking educational information programs related to the arts. DSC_0228 DSC_0233 DSC_0238 DSC_0268 DSC_0277 DSC_0306

Richard Arimado’s TOP VIEUX solo exhibit



Perspective can dramatically change a work of art. What was once hidden at eye-level can be something completely new and different with, say, a birds-eye point-of-view. It takes an artist of wit and bravado to go beyond what is common and explore the different dimensions of what he paints. This also opens up a whole new world for an art-lover who is accustomed to taking in paintings from an ordinary angle.Vieux031Richard Arimado (b.1970) is such a painter. Painting birds-eye views of nostalgic street scenes, Arimado takes his audience on a journey of perspective, showing masterly street scenes from above with his figures looking up. Arimado’s distinct compositions use turn-of-the-century motifs that give his paintings a nostalgic aura that is only enhanced by his playful treatment of perspective.Vieux043-2Now, art lovers can view his latest works on display at his latest one-man show. Entitled Top Vieux, the exhibit will open at Galleria Nicolas on November 7, 2013 at 6:00 p.m. and runs until November 20, 2013.
The newly-renovated Galleria Nicolas located at the 3rd Floor Art Space in Glorietta 4, Ayala Center, Makati City hosts this much awaited Arimado exhibition. Inquiries may be directed to their landline at (632) 625-0273 or email at info@gallerianicolas.com.

Manileño born 
Richard Arimado was born and raised in Manila and has always had an inclination towards the visual arts, studying Drafting Tech at the Technological Institute of the Philippines, and later Advertising at the Panday Sining Art Study Center.Vieux054The defining characteristic of Arimado’s art is that of a perspective. Arimado paints his subjects from the top view, in the act of looking up, pausing as if to examine the audience staring down at them. His vision of turn-of-the-century motifs shows a strong nostalgic tendency of our cultural past and of the artist’s, as Arimado explores various aspects of the Philippine way of life. Freezing mid–walk was perhaps a luxury long forgotten, but successfully captured by the artist with wide–eyed curiosity.

Tutuban Train Station
For his latest exhibition, Arimado expands the settings of his paintings. Depicting his figures in boats along the Pasig River, or in the Tutuban Train Station, or in the plaza rotunda of a church, Arimado once again goes beyond his comfort zone and brings us to places of memory through the fantastic viewpoints that elicit playfulness and a cutting sense of humor. These paintings are wonderful guides of what our cities once were at the height of its greatness. In this manner, Arimado is also a painter of memory and history—but from the vantage point of idyllic nostalgia.
This lighthearted approach has seen collectors recently snapping up Arimado pieces. An Arimado artwork is perfect in the family room or den—where collectors can reminisce about a bygone era. Internationally, Richard Arimado is gaining much recognition in the art scene. In the recently-held charity auction of International Care Ministries in Hong Kong, Arimado’s 30 x 36 oil on canvas painting “Old Manila” fetched HK$39,800, or Php211,000. With his profile rising, Arimado’s latest exhibition has become a must-see art event and it would be a shame for any collector to miss it.Richard Arimado's TOP VIEUX solo exhibit

The Interrogation of Contemporary Art

Finally! A peek into Aileen Lanuza’s 2013 paintings.20130810-105010.jpgAileen in he middle, with Monica and Daniel Dela Cruz

Exploring new directions in the integration of popular art and culture with renditions of literary archetypes, painter Aileen Lanuza reaches the intersections of Filipinana, pop aesthetics, interest in the silver screen and feminism in her intriguing new series titled The Interrogation of Maria Clara. The titular painting is in the guise of a movie poster (complete with the laurel-surrounded text announcing awards garnered), setting the overall tone of an attempted discourse. The passive and feminine Maria Clara – long a symbol of the chastity of the Filipina – is culled from Jose Rizal’s Noli Me Tangere and passed through the prism of Lanuza’s own vision of femininity. Thus appropriated, she is then considered another pop cultural trope as opposed to a national archetype and is treated accordingly in the modern medium of film, alongside other “heroes” of the medium—including animated characters and film stars.


But why is the fragile and revered Maria Clara being the subject of an interrogation in the first place? In this show, artist Aileen Lanuza presents twelve paintings which allows the viewer to answer the question himself and to weave his own story. Lanuza investigates this fixation with Maria Clara as she presents her own concern for the silver screen, Hollywood, and even icons of Filipino movies mixed with favorite Disney characters. Lanuza herself is far from inexperienced in such forays. She has long experimented with placing the female form in pop cultural contexts – Catwoman, for instance – and has a conceptually surrealist series using the archetypal image of Maria Clara. As she progressed in her practice, she began to strip the contexts from her figurations and presented women in postures that indicated sensual femininity, throughout which she displays a remarkable affinity for hyperrealism as an aesthetic style.20130810-103657.jpg

A fine arts graduate of the University of the Philippines, Aileen Lanuza’s career trajectory has seen a level of critical attention, her latest achievement being a Juror’s Choice Award from the GSIS Art Competition. Moreover, her paintings have been included the auctions of Larasati and Borobudur, and has been featured in publications such as “A Treasury of Philippine Nudes,” “Larasati, Pictures of Asia,” and “100 Years, 100 nudes” by the UP Alumni Centennial celebration. So there is a degree of familiarity with the subject at hand. But in this new series, we have a more nuanced evaluation of the concepts.20130810-103705.jpg


These interpolations make for a fascinating viewing experience, and doubtless serves as an evolutionary development in Lanuza’s practice. In her tireless studies of what it means to be a woman in the Philippines, Lanuza has hit upon a vital aspect of contemporary visual art. It will be interesting to see her survey this further in future shows20130810-103641.jpg

Text from Galerie Joaquin

Justin Nuyda’s Mindscapes (exhibit opening)

Justin Nuyda is one of the storied figures in the history of Philippine art. Beyond his own thought-provoking oeuvre, Nuyda is an instigator of the collaboration and aesthetic development that defined the late Philippine Modernism period of the 1960s and 70s. He was one of the founders – together with National Artists H.R. Ocampo, Cesar Legaspi, and Alfredo Roces – of the iconic Saturday Group of Artists. Comparable with other prolific artist groups such as Eduouard Manet’s bohemes that met at the Café Guerboi in 19th century Paris and the tertulias of the La Punalada Group in Barcelona, or the Cedar Bar Group of New York in the 50s that had the likes of Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, and Mark Rothko.


The Saturday Group in the 1970s attracted an entire generation of eminent artists at Ermita’s Tazo de Oro Restaurant—aside from the founders, these included artists such as National Artists, Jose Joya and Ang Kiukok, Onib Olmedo, Agustin Goy, and Juvenal Sanso (whenever he was in town from Paris) as well as artists from diverse groups such as the Dimasalang Group, the Bulacan artists among others. The Saturday Group also appealed to writers and curators—including Lorna Montilla, Jolico Cuadra, Rod. Paras-Perez, and Leo Banesa. Justin Nuyda was right in the thick of this celebrated company.20130725-015648.jpg

A cerebral artist, Nuyda’s concern is to explore and challenge the boundaries of the mind. He uses visual techniques, and vibrant colors to explore his vision of the landscapes of his mind.

Justin Nuyda graduated from the Fine Arts program of the University of Santo Tomas in 1966. With numerous awards to his name, he is notable for having won the first 13 Artist Award in 1972 (a distinction he shares with Angelito Antonio and Danilo Dalena) and for having won the Art Association of the Philippine’s Award in 1968 for his work, Search 39.20130725-015701.jpg

A Modernist heavyweight, Justin Nuyda builds on a career that spans more that forty years of prolific development. The artist’s “Mindscape” series is particularly notable as a bellwether in the development in Philippine abstraction.20130725-015655.jpg

The consummate naturalist (Nuyda gained scientific prominence as a noted lepidopterist, or butterfly expert); he fuses his expansive knowledge of butterflies and nature with a visual art practice that is both geometrically logical yet organic. His canvases flow with dynamism and energy—a characteristic that suites the personal temperament of the artist himself.20130725-015720.jpg

With a critically and commercially distinguished career, Justin Nuyda presents this collection rightfully taking his place as one of the the Philippines’ Masters of Modernism.20130725-015708.jpg

Check out this very special exhibit that will run until August 4, 201320130725-015728.jpg

Galerie Joaquin is located at 371 P. Guevarra Street corner Montessori Lane, Addition Hills, San Juan. They may be reached through their landline at (632) 723-9418 or email at info@galeriejoaquin.com. Please visit their website at http://www.galeriejoaquin.com.

Tales, Folk, Fairy by Carlo Ongchangco and Francis Nacion





At the opening night of Carlo Ongchangco and Francis Nacion’s 2-man exhibitIMG_8397

Literature, folk beliefs, and fairy tales are staging points of a unique new show at the Podium Mall. Francis Nacion and Carlo Ongchangco combine their respective narrative art practices and use stories to form the basis of new works that push the boundaries of the visual depictions of stories. Both artists are also eager to showcase the latest direction of their aesthetic style, imbuing these new works with a fresh sense of development and evolution.

Special guests and their avid collectors were presentIMG_8395

Carlo Ongchangco’s continued evolution as an artist has him taking the most cherished childhood classics, like the “The Little Matchgirl” and “The Emperor’s New Wardrobe,” and depicting them in his narrative art. Having graduated with a degree in Interior Design from the University of Santo Tomas, he has dabbled in a variety of media in his career as a visual artist. He is currently the Creative Director of Red Fish, an art apparel label he established early this year that creates its own graphic shirts.  From 2007 to 2010, Ongchangco was also co-owner and Creative Director of White Box Studio Gallery. It seems that this visual artist, already making waves among collectors, is here to stay.

Ongchangco’s worksIMG_8394

Ongchangco’s sculptures and Nacion’s paintings (background)IMG_8393

Adorable polar bear, one of Nacion’s characters that he uses in his paintings.IMG_8392

On the other end of the spectrum, Francis Nacion uses his own personal experience as a springboard for a larger examination of Philippine folklore and folk traditions. His investigation into our interactions with the spirit world was brought about by his brother’s third-eye. Coming off the darkness of his earlier works, the Nacion’s brighter canavases are nevertheless still visually arresting and beautifully haunting.
Nacion plays on the ability of spirits to take the forms of humans and animals. So we have a painting like “Metamorphose,” which shows a bird transforming into a woman—or “Solar Eclipse,” where a spirit entity in the form of a man transforms into a dog. Done in an abstracted form of cubism, they are wonderful renditions of folklore in the Philippines.

Everyone’s buzzing about the exhibitIMG_8391

Nacion’s works on the left, Ongchangco on the right.IMG_8390