Un­mask­ing Bar­rio­quinto and his art phi­lan­thropy

The Philippine Star - - FRONT PAGE - MIL­LET M. MANANQUIL

Why is An­dres Bar­rio­quinto wear­ing a face mask?

I asked the artist’s man­ager Derek Flo­res this ques­tion dur­ing the open­ing of his ex­hibit at the Na­tional Mu­seum of Fine Arts last Nov. 8.

“Bar­rio­quinto is feel­ing un­der the weather. He’s mak­ing sure not to catch the flu,” Derek an­swered.

But some­one close to the artist said: “Maybe the mask is a state­ment.”

What­ever. But dur­ing this ex­hibit, there was one state­ment that came loud and clear: Bar­rio­quinto wants to help Filipino artists.

This award-win­ning artist whose works have been sold in auc­tion houses such as Sotheby’s, Christie’s, Larasati and Leon Gallery took the chance to give back and sup­port young Filipino artists and fu­ture grantees of the Asian Cul­tural Coun­cil (ACC) as it cel­e­brates its 55th an­niver­sary this year through a spe­cial ben­e­fit ex­hibit of his con­tem­po­rary por­trai­ture.

Bar­rio­quinto did por­traits of 18 in­dus­try lead­ers, art pa­trons, con­nois­seurs, namely Ce­cile Ang, Grace Ang, Grace Bar­ber­sBaja, Abi­gail Bi­nay-Cam­pos, Ben Chan, An­gelita Almeda Cruz, Baby Araneta-Fores, Ju­liana Gomez, Richard Gomez, Lucy Tor­res-Gomez, Small Laude, Jes­sica Kienle-Maxwell, Josie CruzNa­tori, Sheila Romero, Rob­bie San­tos, Au­drey Tan-Zu­biri, Bea Zo­bel and Kevin Zon­nen­berg.

The ACC was cre­ated in 1963 by John D. Rock­e­feller III “to give grants to in­di­vid­u­als and in­sti­tu­tions to sup­port work that fos­ters ex­change be­tween Asia and the US.” Since then, some 400 Filipinos have re­ceived ACC grants, and eight of them have been pro­claimed Na­tional Artists: Jose Joya (vis­ual arts), Lu­cre­cia Kasi­lag (mu­sic), Jose Maceda (mu­sic), Lam­berto Avel­lana (film), Fran­cisco Feli­ciano (mu­sic), Alice Reyes (dance), Ra­mon San­tos (mu­sic) and newly-con­ferred Kid­lat Tahimik (film).

ACC grantees from the Philip­pines for 2018 are Joseph Keith

An­dres Bar­rio­quinto em­braces the value of giv­ing back, to­gether with the Asian Cul­tural Coun­cil

Anic­oche (theater), Anna Marika Lissa Con­stantino (cu­ra­tion/vis­ual arts), Maria Joselina Anna Gon­za­lez Cruz (cu­ra­tion), Zeny May Re­ci­doro (art crit­i­cism), Anna Mar­garita Reyes (dance/cin­e­matog­ra­phy), Elena Comen­dador and Eliz­a­beth Roxas (de­sign & dance col­lab­o­ra­tion) and Grace Nono (mu­sic/grad­u­ate stud­ies).

Dur­ing the ex­hibit open­ing, ACC chair­man Wendy O’Neill and ACC Philip­pines chair­man Ernest Es­caler both thanked Bar­rio­quinto for join­ing hands with ACC and em­brac­ing art phi­lan­thro­phy.

Art phi­lan­thropy was clearly his state­ment, per­haps tucked be­neath that face mask. What about his art state­ment? “My work is per­haps more sharply in­di­vid­u­al­ized than the re­al­ist, there­fore more dra­mat­i­cally my own, some­times to the point of ec­cen­tric­ity. My works’ individuality be­comes more nat­u­ral when I’m prob­ing my own soul rather than re­flect­ing the world of ideas, and in ex­press­ing my in­ner world rather than re­veal­ing a ba­sic har­mony around us. I paint im­ages so ex­ag­ger­ated or dis­torted that they take us away from the fa­mil­iar world into one of emo­tion and feel­ing. In their most ex­treme, th­ese ex­pres­sions may even be­come hys­ter­i­cal or night­mar­ish.”

We re­ally didn’t see hys­ter­i­cal or night­mar­ish por­traits in the ex­hibit. What we saw were charm­ing, enig­matic, pro­found por­traits that made us stop and think, and see the sub­jects from a dif­fer­ent per­spec­tive. Manila’s art-lov­ing crowd had some fa­vorites though — like those of Bea Zo­bel, Ben Chan and Au­drey Tan-Zu­biri.

What’s next for Bar­rio­quinto in 2019? His first solo show in New York City in March , a come­back solo ex­hi­bi­tion in Lon­don in Septem­ber. What state­ment piece will he wear

next? I am aching to un­mask it.

***

In part­ner­ship with the Na­tional Mu­seum, the ACC presents “Por­traits by An­dres Bar­rio­quinto” goes on un­til Nov. 15, 2018 at the Os­mena Hall of the Na­tional Mu­seum of Fine Arts, Padre Bur­gos Av­enue, Manila.

Fol­low the au­thor on In­sta­gram and Face­book@mil­let­martinez­manan­quil. Email her at mm­manan­quil@ philstar­me­dia.com.

Au­drey Tan-Zu­biri with Sen. Migz Zu­biri

Ben Chan

An­dres Bar­rio­quinto with his state­ment mask

US Am­bas­sador Sung Kim, (6th from left) with the movers of the Asian Cul­tural Coun­cil Philip­pines (from left) Malu Gam­boa-Lindo, Ce­cily Cook, Rajo Lau­rel, Alice Ed­uardo, Dr. Joven Cua­nang, Ernest Es­caler, Josie Na­tori, Mari­bel Ong­pin, Miho Walsh, ACC chair­man Wendy O’Neill, Ching Cruz, Tess Rances

Small Laude Grace Ang with Fe­lix Ang

Richard Gomez and Lucy Tor­res-Gomez with their and Ju­liana Gomez‘s por­traits

Bledes Fores-Le­garda, Veana Fores and Mar­garita Fores with the por­trait of their mom Baby Fores

Jes­sica Kienle-Maxwell with Jesse Maxwell

Sheila Romero

Grace Bar­bers-Baja with Lauro Baja III

Josie Na­tori

Bea Zo­bel

Therese San­tos Linda Ho-McAfee, Joanne de Asis-Ben­itez, Marissa Araneta

Ching Cruz Shine Kuk Derek Flo­res, Fe Ro­driguez

Eloisa Klech­eski Margie Mo­ran, Carol Gar­cia, Miguel Pas­tor

An­gelita Almeda Cruz

Gemma Cruz-Araneta, Elena Coloma, Betsy Wes­ten­dorp

Marivic Vasquez, Bet­tina Os­mena

US Am­bas­sador Sung Kim and wife Jae Eun Chung

Kaye Tinga, Alice Ed­uardo

Tina Cuevas

Su­san Joven

Agnes Hui­bon­hoa

Doris MagsaysayHo

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