GREEN THUMBS & MINDS
There’s a twin bill of contemporary artists at the Pinto Gallery this month as Lena Cobangbang and Jayson Oliveria unveil their latest solo works. “Primal Green” is Cobangbang’s meditation on the ephemeral nature of the world, reflected in the “withering and renewing” of her subject matter. In her vibrant watercolor paintings, Cobangbang, a member of the “Bastards” collective led by Manuel Ocampo, seeks to “evoke Edenic ideals lost… fraught with paranoia, as it teeters on the edge of the untamed wild and civilization.” For inspiration, the 41-year-old artist, a recipient of the Cultural Center of the Philippines’ Thirteen Artists award in 2006, looked to Edouard Manet’s Impressionist masterpiece, Le Déjeuner sur l'herbe, while also borrowing themes found in Richard Harris’ version of the song “MacArthur Park,” a lament on lost or dying love. In “Long Time No See” Oliveria brings a more lighthearted touch to his art, known for its often shocking themes softened with a humorous approach. The 43-year-old artist loads his canvases with visual puns, suggestive themes, double-entendre, and scatology, as well as a healthy dose of gallows humor thrown in for good measure. In his work, however, there is always the element of truth, “an observation we make in our head but cannot say out loud.” For this exhibit, Oliveria, also a member of the elite circle of CCP Thirteen Artists awardees, called on what the show’s notes refer to as the 10 muses of poetry: “Miss Hearing, Miss Understanding, Miss Translating, Miss Managing, Miss Laying, Miss Leading, Miss Reading, Miss Appropriating Cliches, Miss Placing Objects, and Miss Guided Thoughts at Inappropriate Times (especially in church or in funerals).” June 11 to July 2, Pinto Gallery, Sierra Madre Street, Grand Heights Road, Antipolo; 697.1015.
FLORA & FAUNA Clockwise from left: The invitations to the Pinto Gallery show; untitled works by Lena Cobangbang.