Ateneo Art Awards: Questionably "unbound"
The mid-August Ateneo Art Awards exhibition "Anatomy of Autonomy" at the Shangri-La Plaza was obviously a tough show to pull off. The MRT-gateway Shang with its upscale, commercial stores and visitors from mixed demographics is not an ideal place to house contemporary art pieces detached from their "natural" environments, i.e. their original galleries. But the curators' best was manifest, especially in the way they included as many components of the pieces from their locales in this temporary area. It also drew the most unexpected onlookers, and made art a wee bit more accessible.
|Ateneo Art Awards 2011 at the Shangri-La Plaza Grand Atrium.|
On its eighth year, the Ateneo Art Awards takes the theme "Anatomy of Autonomy," dissecting and surveying artistic thought in the contemporary Philippine art scene. Unbound by any cultural, social, academic or even aesthetic dogma, the creative spirit of young Filipino visual artists is duly recognized.Call this question amateur (see the title of the blog), but if it would not be governed by any sort of criteria, which creed would the jury follow? The dogma of no dogma at all? I'll leave that open.
But when I heard this year's exhibit of shortlisted nominees which included now-awardee Kawayan de Guia (whose works are ever so clever), folk visual narrator Rodel Tapaya and Bembol dela Cruz was about to be in the area where I live, I knew I had to see it no matter what.
|Renato Barja Jr (2010) Life in a Suitcase. Found object and oil on board|
|MM Yu (2009). A Few of My Favorite Things. Print|
|Bembol dela Cruz (2011). from House Blends.|
|Rodel Tapaya (2010) Baptism, detail. Acrylic on canvas|
|Nona Garcia (2010). One Off. Oil on canvas|
|Kawayan de Guia (2010). Bomba. Mixed media & multimedia|