What the artist saw, he would recreate.
What the artist sees for countless times, he will recreate more than once. As the creative operation ensues the artist becomes eventually the thing he once saw.
In classic medieval spirituality we call this CONTEMPLATION—the gazing upon of the soul on eternal things viewed in the spiritual realm. This human ability of the transcendent gaze to pore through matters we do not normally and optically sense had also been the stuff of the artistic imagination. For this faculty of fathoming the invisible had also been attributed to artists bearing the gift in making tangible what was been apprehended by visions of inner worlds. That would the redefine artists as another breed of visionary mystics of forlorn years. Such assumption may call to mind the names of Rembrandt and William Blake. Now, fast forward…
What name, then, do we call to a group of artists (and teachers as well) who mounts an exhibition of works that defy a homogeneous category and yet beheld personal visions of the times we live? Well…they’ll defy conventional categories!
FEATI University School of Fine Arts presents THE GAZE showcasing the power of the hand moving with adept skill as well as the power of the mind affixed in the contemporary vision of today. THE GAZE unapologetically features the grace, the rough and tumble of the art imagination as the primary creative force central to art-making. The center of the mind focuses on what’s in front of its examination and playfulness—that is what holds them spellbound. One may dismiss what is presented here and quip: “To each to his own device or folly.” But, then again, we take a second look to view this exhibition as a sampling of works that happen when we take a second, third and repeated glances on subject matters catching our fancy. We may even take a step backward and look at the show in general as a microcosmic cross-section of the artistic mind being employed and engaged in the Philippine art scene. You see that small canvas over there? That is how one of the masters must’ve thought or contemplated upon on that idea.
What we see is what is most cherished as significant to look at, observed and aesthetically contemplated on. This means that what we highlight in our hearts are visual gems we hold before our gaze. FEATI artists, both faculty and students, must have contemplated on the polarities of our “halo-halo” contemporary culture from such visual reservoir we can draw inspiration from:
- Current events to local gossip
- National issues to showbiz intrigues
- Amorsolo to anime
- Classicism to street art
- Pop art to K-pop
Whether we shuffle between info overload in Facebook or get sidetracked by the ruckus sparked by pork-barrel scam, there’s no stopping the roving eye of the artist scavenging for inspiration. These sources may not appear so heavenly and yet each significant experience that gets our attention may be fuel to drive artists to get up and paint.
No matter the shape of things fashioned by one’s imagination, the artist has that rare talent to look at the “object of gaze”, make it as his own and produce a form, an image, and a reality that uplifts and awakens.
May we reconsider that the eyes of our minds are indispensable tools equal to the pen, brush or chisel an artist holds in his hands.
January 30, 2014
Exhibit runs until February 22, 2014
Galeria de las Islas
3rd floor, Silahis Center
744 Gen. Luna Street
visit the event page in Facebook here