It’s not every day that I got to meet a National Artist which made this experience really bizarre. The event made me wonder what’s going on every Artist’s mind and if they are different from an ordinary people like me. I observed how he speak, his gestures and even how he dressed up. I came to realize that they are just like a typical person. The only difference will show on their masterpieces which definitely expressed how talented and creative that person is.
I am referring to National Artist BenCab (Benedicto Cabrera) who celebrates fifty years of his art practice with a series of multi-sited exhibitions and events. As a fitting kick-off, the first exhibition was held at the Lopez Museum‘s Library section and was opened to the public last April 23.
We were able to witness his frames of reference which offers a glimpse into his life and art practice during the late 1960’s onwards while living and exhibiting abroad and his eventual return to the Philippines for good.
More than his works, the exhibition is an intimate portrait of the artist, the lover, the family man, the bibliophile and a collector, among other hats he has and continues to wear.
Never before exhibited, about 15 of his art books will be made available to the public. These small scrapbook-like compilations of collages (clippings and cut-outs), drawings and sketches interspersed with his handwriting; prominently feature his love for nostalgia, handmade paper and bookbinding. A diaristic presentation of his aesthetics, letters, mementos and other keepsakes also find their way into the pages.
Other hand-crafted books show the early studies and iterations of some of his most important series of works: Sabel, Larawan and Japanese Women (ukiyo-e). Also included in the exhibition are early folios of prints he was a part of, along with other Filipino and foreign artists.
The Lopez Museum and Library is also proud to exhibit three works from its own collection, including the iconic Soldiers (Heroes of the Past IV), 1998.
Frames of Reference is curated by Dannie Alvarez and is co-presented by Bencab Art Foundation; Sureste Properties Inc.; Samsung Electronics Philippines Corp. (SEPCO), their technology partner; and Gourmet Farms Inc., their public programs partner.
For more information, call Tina at 6312417 or email email@example.com. Lopez Museum and Library is at the G/F Benpres Bldg., Meralco cor. Exchange Rd., Ortigas Center, Pasig City.
Museum and library hours are 8-5pm Mondays through Saturdays except Sundays and holidays.