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Wednesday, August 4, 2010

HK BY NIGHT




Vidal "Undo" Alcoseba, Jr
HK BY NIGHT
8th Solo Exhibition

This benefit show is the artist's personal exploration
of the life and loss at Junquera Street, Cebu.

August 5 to 16, 2010
856 G Gallery
856 A.S. Fortuna Street,
Banilad, Mandaue City 6014
Cebu, Philippines
(6332) 416.1946
(6332) 344.3039
www.856gallery.com


Living the Life
By Ritchie Landis Doner Quijano

Perhaps there is no other Cebuano artist who like Vidal Alcoseba Jr. has done it all. For this he epitomizes the ultimate realities of an artist’s life. He’s the guy who’s done that, been there and doing it again. A vicious cycle for the longest time. Fondly called Undo by his many friends. Undo in his life and career has seen and experienced both the good life and the untoward. Both the sweet and the unpleasant are equally a part of his becoming.His skills is of no question. He can easily succeed, so he did. At times he stumbles and struggles again. The man is a many splendored thing. And perhaps it is his long experience including the ups and downs of his life that makes him stronger and immune and numb to all things that may kill him. As a long time painter he eats art for breakfast. His blood, sweat & tears comes oozing with art. These physical elements can very well be the medium his artworks are composed. He belongs to a family of artists hence, art like blood runs in his veins. Now we may never can tell whether his life imitates art or vice-versa. He is the embodiment of a polar extreme life and so is his art. He’s been thru sickness & health. And thru near death. What else then can a man like Undo fear. None I suppose. For his latest solo exhibition at the Gabriela Gallery, Undo will unprecedentedly present on canvas his impressions, recollections, vision and to a larger extent the life he immersed in Junquera, a popular red light district in the city. In the locality notoriously known as the hub for prostitution and drugs, Undo bravely explores it’s countless corners and joints where cold beer and alcohol is served, he’s also made the rounds to the labyrinth-like passage-ways, trails and escape routes known only to the inhabitants of the area. Undo is a familiar face to the locals whom they treat like an honorary resident. He knows not just the dreaded strip of Junquera but the entire planetarium of Kamagayan like the palm of his hand.

All these will be interpreted maybe not literally but in the way the artist’s eyes sees art among the chaos of the shanties and over-population and among the graceful parade of young women illuminated by fog lamps who are about to be taken for an outing. Though not all that happens here are shameful. Amidst the noisy crowd hovering over videoke, the stand-by’s, pedestrians, vendors, parking boys, the prostitutes in waiting with their pimps and Mamasangs (handlers), you will see as well slices of innocence. Children are at play while at the very heart of kamagayan is a chapel. Sin meets innocence. Here only the strong survives much similar to the art world. Life goes on and Undo is our firsthand witness and tour guide. Where there’s signs of life, artists tends to gravitate towards it and makes their own propositions. This red light district is a living microcosm of globalization because foreigners are also frequent visitors to this place. Undos’s exhibit is a vibrant and dazzling nightscape. It will be so much different from his previous showings. This can pass as his most honest undertaking because the most honest and sincere painting is a picture that is experienced by by the artist.

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