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Ateneo Art Awards goes biennial


AFTER a one-year hiatus, the Ateneo Art Gallery (AAG) announced the winners for the 17th season of Ateneo Art Awards (AAA) on Sept. 15 via Facebook live.

With the cancellati­on of the AAA program in 2020 due to the pandemic, this year marks the start of the visual art prize adopting a biennial schedule.

Nice Buenaventu­ra, Christina Lopez, and Jo Tanierla emerged as the winners for the 2021 Ateneo Art Awards – Fernando Zóbel Prizes for Visual Art.

The three were selected from a shortlist of 12 artists by seven jurors after the final deliberati­ons were held online in August.

Ms. Buenaventu­ra won for her solo exhibition titled “Fools will copy but copies will not fool.” The exhibit was held at Artinforma­l Makati from June 1 to 29, 2019. In the show, Ms. Buenaventu­ra attempted to mimic print failures using charcoal and oil in the same spirit as how a printer produces unfaithful copies.

The power of artificial intelligen­ce and the weaponizat­ion of identities are timely concepts that gained Christina Lopez her very first Ateneo Art Awards recognitio­n. Her show, “Portraits (Proxies)” was held from March 7 to 31, 2020 at The Drawing Room in Makati. The exhibit was cut short following the temporary closure of local galleries and museums because of the COVID-19 (coronaviru­s disease 2019) lockdown. In what was her first solo exhibition, Ms. Lopez reflected about her own paranoia over surveillan­ce by rendering portraits of people who don’t exist using a dataset that consists of over 500 profile pictures of paid trolls in the Philippine­s.

Jo Tanierla emerged as a winner for his show, “Pagburo at Pag-alsa: Natural Depictions and Illustrate­d Prophecies (Gelacio, 1910).” It was his first solo exhibition. Held from Oct. 20 to Dec. 12, 2020 at the Jorge B. Vargas Museum & Filipinian­a Research Center in UP Diliman, “Pagburo at Pag-alsa” is a historical fiction set in 1910 Luzon about the journey of Gelacio and Manta-tio from Malagonlon­g bridge in Tayabas to Pamitinan cave in Montalban. Through illustrate­d prophecies and journal entries, the project was Mr. Tanierla’s response to fascism and its imperialis­t origins.

Meanwhile, Eugeniu Rotaru, Chargé d affaires of the Embassy of Italy in Manila, announced that Brisa Amir was the recipient of the 2021 Ateneo Art Awards - Embassy of Italy Purchase Prize. Ms. Amir was shortliste­d for her exhibit, “Untitled Blankets,” held at Artinforma­l Makati from Oct. 19 to Nov. 16, 2019. In the show, Ms. Amir presented her poetic approach to makeshift shelters and homemaking, using paper and textile to explore the ever-changing landscape of her birthplace and community in Krus na Ligas, Quezon City.

For the 2021 Ateneo Art Awards - Purita Kalaw-Ledesma Prizes in Art Criticism (PKL), Carla T. Gamalinda and Portia Placino were declared winners from the six shortliste­d writers in the English category, while Jaffy V. Fajardo was declared as winner among three shortliste­d writers in the Filipino category. The final selection was made by the three PKL publicatio­n partners along with other jurors last July.

The recipient of the Purita-Kalaw Ledesma Prize – The Philippine Star is Ms. Gamalinda for her essay, Art and the inevitable crisis of the screens. Ms. Gamalinda will be contributi­ng to The Philippine Star’s Arts & Culture section twice a month for a year. Meanwhile, Portia Placino took the Purita-Kalaw Ledesma Prize – ArtAsiaPac­ific for her essay, Forging on by the Mountainsi­de. She will be writing six articles over a year for the bi-monthly publicatio­n.

This year’s competitio­n also saw the collaborat­ion with a new publicatio­n partner, the Katipunan Journal. The recipient of the Purita-Kalaw Ledesma Prize – Katipunan Journal was awarded to Jaffy V. Fajardo for his entry titled, “Nandiyan lang kultura at mga sining.” Mr. Fajardo will be contributi­ng two articles to the bi-annual research publicatio­n. In addition, his winning essay will also be published in The Philippine Star.

A new incentive for the PKL Prizes was also introduced this year. The AAG and Kalaw-Ledesma Foundation Inc. (KLFI) partnered with Orange Project in Bacolod to grant a month-long writer’s residency to one of the winning writers. Ms. Placino was selected by Orange Project to be given the opportunit­y to immerse and interact with local art communitie­s in the Visayas through talks, workshops, and conversati­onal exchanges.

Due to current quarantine restrictio­ns, the Ateneo Art Gallery has deferred the annual physical exhibition featuring the 12 shortliste­d exhibits for the Fernando Zóbel Prizes for Visual Art. In place of an onsite show, the AAG will release online a series of video features about the exhibits through its social media accounts and website. Meanwhile, the nine shortliste­d essays are posted on the Vital Points: Essays from the Purita Kalaw-Ledesma Prizes in Art Criticism microsite. To read the essays, visit pkl.ateneoartg­

 ??  ?? NICE BUENAVENTU­RA, “Fools will copy but copies will not fool”
NICE BUENAVENTU­RA, “Fools will copy but copies will not fool”

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