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Monday, December 20, 2010

IN MY LIFE: SOUL PORTRAITS BY ONIB OLMEDO




In My Life: Soul Portraits by Onib Olmedo

Ayala Museum marks the artistic contributions of Onib Olmedo in its latest exhibition In My Life: Soul Portraits by Onib Olmedo at the Ground Floor Gallery.

In My Life: Soul Portraits by Onib Olmedo will feature approximately 60-80 artworks that will be presented to the public for the first time. Recognized as one of the leading figurative expressionists in the country, Olmedo’s works captivated the soul of his subject matters. Each portrait not only depicts the physical attributes but also conveys their deepest feelings. Art Philippines describes his work as “not beautiful in the classical sense; but they are extremely powerful vehicles for expressing psychological tensions.”

Onib Olmedo was a fearless artist. Bold in his day, he probed deep into the human spirit and examined the human condition with brushstrokes that distorted shapes, lines, objects and the human face and figure to present reality. For him, people were real human beings of flesh-and-blood engaged in real daily struggles to survive. Their humanistic perspective was his essential and lasting contribution to Philippine art. Of the modernists, it was this perspective which constituted his authenticity.

Onib won gold medals in two Art Association of the Philippines Competitions and a Mobil Oil Philippine Art Competition; an “Araw ng Maynila” Award in art, and was one of Thirteen Artist Awardees of the Cultural Center of the Philippines. He was the recipient of the prestigious international art competition award in Cagnes Sur Mer, France, in 1992 — the very first Filipino to be accorded such a distinction. Art critic Dr. Alice Guillermo referred to the artist as: “the landmark Filipino artist of the 20th century who has played a major role in the history of Philippine art, exerting vast influence on a whole new generation of artists through figurative expressionist paintings that explore the inner recesses of the soul, affirming the ultimate triumph of the human spirit.”

In My Life: Soul Portraits by Onib Olmedo will run until January 2011. The exhibition catalogue will also be available for sale at the Ayala Museum Shops. Additional support is provided by Chateau 1771.

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