'Pintados sa Magayon' Exhibit Showcases Bikolano Visual Arts

Monday, April 19th, 2010

LEGAZPI CITY, April 16 - Local artists across Bikol region have decided to promote Bikolano visual arts during the month-long Magayon festival here.

Taking center stage, over and above the cacophony of sights, sounds and colors the festival dishes out, is Pintados sa Magayon -- dubbed as ArtRuption 2010 -- an exhibit that features the works of foremost Bikolano artists -- this time numbering to more than 30 strong -- at the Albay Provincial Capitol Atrium.

Albay information officer Ex Rieza said it has become one of the major highlights of the month-long community celebration involving 285 events.

On display at The Atrium are new works of painters Gus Albor and Pancho Piano, both internationally known artists, and local mainstays such as Pop Sierra, Lupo Grageda, Johnny Magdasoc, Archie Perez, Cesar Gueta, Roger Monasterial, Nats Jimenez, Pat Noveno, Ereberto 'Sili King' Gonzales, Randy Alzaga and sculptors Ely Benito, Vicente "Enteng Bato" Ajero, and Manny Samson among others.

Albor, a post modern minimalist is presently among the few who dominate abstract expressionism in the country. His "Expanse" in oil, a deep gray hue of ash and clouds in a dim universe beyond the shadow of a frozen planet could explore the metaphysical, probably characterizing the artist's search for, or already discovered point of reference in his chartered journey to the vast, unchartered breadth.

Pop Sierra's works have also evolved so far and mightily.

Most striking this time, however, is "Enteng Bato" Ajero's sculptures done in Mayon Volcano rocks, his favorite and only medium since one can remember. Living in his studio hut with many of his astounding works amid the sprawling wasteland of boulders and lahars, by a giant dike of flash flood ravaged road to the Cagsawa Ruins in the historic Daraga town, the artist and his works may have as well blended with the toughness of his medium and the harshness of his environment.

Rieza also said that tourists stop by to view Enteng Bato's works on their way to the world famous Cagsawa Ruins under the searing heat of the summer sun or the threat of a flash flood during monsoons, and wonder how queer it is to breed ideas in such an inhospitable place.

Thus explains his piece "Lalaking Bungog" (Deaf Man), a stone figure of a naked man sitting on the ground covering his ears with his hands, listening to nothing but to the beating of his own heart and reading his own thoughts.

Ely Benito, a sculptor of most numerous and striking works many of which were commissioned, on the other hand explores old themes with fresh visions along with Samson who has also started to use volcanic rocks and employ surrealism in his tri-dimensional works.(PNA)