BY JAY BAUTISTA |
The need to understand the contemporary practice in Philippine art has always been the burden of the young. Emphatic assortment of paints mixed on top of one another made are more evident by their predominant metaphors as reflected in their experimental yet distinct, confident yet sensitive brushstrokes.
The Alarcon Brothers weaves all these assumptions not merely as a conscious interlude of colors, illustrations and other media but something that originally perceived in their fragile/fertile imagination. Newly initiated in the art scene however these brothers as visual artists have already shown potential by exhibiting in the local galleries and have also been recognized in national art competitions for their promising visual language and in finding novel approaches in painting.
|Terminus by Luke Alarcon|
A melancholic Luke has the soul of an old master--well versed with the ways of the Renaissance. Depicting subjects that are of the 16th to18th century Western iconology, barely in his teens he has the makings of a fine painter on canvas. Luke favors the silent yet haunting pieces marked by loudest gobs of paint, like a smear target on the wall. His colors evoke European charm yet these are silent, sensitive rants of a budding contemporary artist desperate to his persistence in adhering to this visual style.
Mind you his paintings do not ridicule the masters long gone rather they pay tribute to painting as a social commentary. Against the advent of superfluous technology, Luke further hones his artistry by dwelling on long forgotten patterns of a beautiful forgotten epoch.
Ejem vividly remembers sketching at the back of cigarette cartons trucks passing through their makeshift food stall at the pier where his father manages a canteen. A choleric by nature, he is not fond of copying images. He recreates by recreating his own, so his trucks would have different shapes of the wheel or color of their bodies.
|The Return of Napoleon by Ejem Alarcon|
Starting off by having a period image as base then once complete as if overturning the process, he splatters colors or work around the image he favors. After the expressionist nature of this under painting he then deciphers what revision will emerged eventually dictating the current themes of his thoughts.
Inspired by their eldest brother Ejem, Aldrine followed his footsteps by leading a full time painter. He found his own path by weaving paint in its purest form leaving most of the canvas untended for the viewer to figure. Such respect to perspective as he illustrates people in an almost abstract form dominates much of Aldrine’s works. As he freshly dabbles into non-representational rendition, glimpses of figures still forebode further inducing more layers to thicken the plot typifying confidence within overall meaning of his images.
Phlegmatic as his choice of colors coalesce his ever-changing moods sometimes too heavy eliciting texture in capturing its weariness. The reserved blank space becomes part of the canvas exuding more ethereal experience than usual. Whatever whiteness becomes the full picture that whimsically deals directly with his emotions.
A nocturnal yet sanguine Didier engages deep into nostalgia by waxing realism on abandoned or deserted localities marked by alienation reminiscent of Edward Hopper strokes. Often devoid of people, he simplifies pavements sometimes recalling childhood memories with only the stark glow of lights as characters. It could lonely yet these places persistently exist.
With a plethora of artists painting people, their absence in his works seems as a visual critique thrives in an abundance of newly found expressions on how these emerging artists look at themselves and their communities.
|Nowadays by Didier Alarcon|
LEAD is as literal as literary resistance of artists hobnobbing in the city. These manifestations confront validation as their own inherent contents and permutations stressing the value of spontaneity, appropriation and positive energy. Establishing tension, solitude and equilibrium, their spatial yet lyrical pieces may be subtle or harsh yet both convey the sense of delight in the painters’ free reign of imagery and visual style. One looks long and hard as each of their art intensifies. Depending how one would come to view the collective significance of these brothers, their personal to randomly induced varied perceptions are commendable.
LEAD encourages critical dialogue between the discriminating tastes of the patronizing public with the creative ambition of these four brother-artists. As they are open to experimentation and more raw approach in art, they still value that paintings should be embodied and its social function is not lost in the art market discourse or painting for painting sake. Assuring four hopeful bright directions, they devote a different attitude, a refreshing way of looking at visual arts. It is an undertaking that may enrich your lives as it has indeed on them. Sometimes, as in their case oil (paint) is thicker than blood.