Must-See Art Exhibits to Experience this Summer | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

Nona Garcia paintings
Installation view of Nona Garcia’s “Overland” at Silverlens Gallery. Image courtesy of Silverlens.

From thought-provoking abstract paintings to mind-boggling outdoor installations, there is a diverse range of art exhibits to choose from around the metro.



1. Nice Buenaventura, Karl Castro, Jon Cuyson, and Eric Ramos Guerrero, “Line of Sight” at Galleria Duemila

Through various artworks, four artists explore where history and visual culture connect. Drawing from memory and overlooked narratives, each artist sends a different message, yet intersects in a precisely-made, crisp, streamlined aesthetic. 

Visual artist, lecturer, and Tropikalye founder Nice Buenaventura continues her practice of recreating print errors through carefully hand-painted works, now with acrylic on dyed linen. Karl Castro creates a sense of disconnect, with torn and layered digital images that have undergone a process of scanning and re-scanning in a collage of sorts that hints at everyday consumerist culture. Curator Cuyson presents acrylic painted on canvas on plywood, which hangs on top of each other in perfect lines, referencing marine issues and structures of power. Finally, Guerrero complements the largely abstract works with rock band players in woodblock prints, made during his residency at the Alfred University in New York.

“Line of Sight” runs at Galleria Duemila from May 6 to June 20, 2023. Visit the exhibition at 210 Loring Street 1300 Pasay City, Manila.

2. Carlo Angelo Saavedra, “Grace” at Artinformal Greenhills

The narrative behind Saavedra’s exhibit “Grace” is simple. He writes that the exhibit is, “a faithful narrative of my private life. It represents my departure from ruin and eventual return to salvation.” While some of Saavedra’s earlier works have echoed a sense of emotional turbulence, his most recent exhibit is filled with suggestions of hope – figures floating in light, outlines of holy statues, and abstract expressionist pieces flush with greenery.

By building on the familiarity of the artist’s home and studio, he maximizes the possibilities of textures with renewed energy, showing his experience of transformation on canvas.

Carlo Saavedra painting
“The Hacienda” acrylic on canvas, 57.25 x 71 in. 2023. Image courtesy of Artinformal.

“Grace” ran at Artinformal Greenhills from May 10 to June 10, 2023, with its Virtual Exhibit accessible here. Visit the Artinformal exhibitions at 277 Connecticut St, Greenhills East, Mandaluyong City.

3. Nona Garcia, “Overland” at Silverlens Gallery

Anything by Nona Garcia is bound to cause a hubbub. With a career spanning two decades, the artist now based in Baguio is known for her highly realistic paintings of scenery and objects, as well as her X-ray-like lightboxes. This specific exhibition “Overland” focuses on life in the towns of the Cordilleras, as she paints both small and magnificently large artworks. 

In the large-scale: a rusting tanker truck, a close-up of moss between stones, and a landscape of stony mountains. On smaller pieces of wood veneer, she paints nature’s variations of wood with branches and twigs. In stunning realistic renditions, the exhibit tells a story of Nona Garcia’s deep connection to subjects familiar to her.

Nona Garcia exhibit at Silverlens
Installation view of Nona Garcia’s “Overland” at Silverlens Gallery. Image courtesy of Silverlens.

“Overland” runs at Silverlens Gallery from June 8 to July 1, 2023. Visit the exhibition at 2263 Don Chino Roces Ave Extension, Makati City.

4. Rolf Campos, “On the Other Hand” at Blanc Gallery

What would happen if you drew art for an exhibit with your non-dominant hand? Rolf Campos rises up to this particular challenge, where he paints through his non-dominant left hand. 

The former botanical illustrator at the National Museum is known for more detailed paintings of foliage. While his works for this exhibition show simpler, black-and-white acrylic pieces, the object charms while suggesting his knowledge of plant anatomy. For Campos, the process was meditative. “On the Other Hand” also features steel black sculptures.

Rolf Campos artwork
Installation view of Rolf Campos, “On the Other Hand” at Blanc Gallery. Image courtesy of Blanc.

“On the Other Hand” runs at Gallery name from June 10 to July 1, 2023. Visit the exhibition at 145 Katipunan Avenue St. Ignatius Village, Quezon City.

5. Pete Jimenez, “Islands for Sale” at the Ateneo Art Gallery

“Islands for Sale” emerged from sculptor Pete Jimenez’s practice of repurposing discarded materials. The installation at the Ateneo Art Gallery comments on the territorial conflicts surrounding the West Philippine Sea. Constructed using decommissioned rescue boats, the immersive installation beckons viewers to embark on a reflective journey contemplating the degradation and exploitation of our precious natural landscapes, as well as larger geopolitical issues.

Pete Jimenez Islands for Sale Ateneo
Installation view from the Arété Amphitheater. Image courtesy of Ateneo Art Gallery.

“Islands for Sale” runs at the Ateneo Art Gallery from April 17, 2021 to December 21, 2024. Visit the installation at Soledad V Pangilinan Arts Wing, Areté, Ateneo de Manila University, Katipunan Avenue, Quezon City.

6. Leeroy New, “Mebuyan’s Vessel” at San Juan beach, La Union

Leeroy New was selected as one of the recipients of a grant from the Burning Man Project for “Mebuyan’s Vessel” in 2021. Since, iterations of the project have traveled to Black Rock City in Nevada, Art in the Park and the Ateneo Art Gallery. 

The essence of the work takes after Philippine mythology, citing Mebuyan, the goddess of the underworld in Bagobo culture. The mother figure guides spirits to their new afterlife home, a story recreated through New’s pod spaces, inviting visitors to imagine new worlds. 

At present, the artwork is open to the public on the open coast of La Union, with programming by the coastal-based organisation and residency Emerging Islands. The sprawling bio-architectural work features a metal skeleton woven with bamboo, along with blue plastic bottles that give both padding and a form of adornment. The science-fiction like installation has been described as New’s “offering to the shores of La Union.”

Mebuyans Vessel Leeroy New
Photo by Geneva May Muhyang.

“Mebuyan’s Vessel” runs until July 2023. Visit the installation at the Waves Beach Club and Residences site in Kabsat Road, Urbiztondo, San Juan, La Union. 

7. Group Exhibition Curated by Patrick Flores, “Elusive Edge” at the M 

The M, also known as the Metropolitan Museum of Manila, has consistently presented captivating exhibitions, showcasing a diverse range of concepts and ideas. For this most recent exhibition, “Elusive Edge” harkens back to an exciting time in Philippine art, with work by abstract expressionist artists during the modern period. 

Curated by art world authority Dr. Patrick Flores, the exhibition centers around the representation of abstract elements in Philippine modern art, with each section exploring different aspects of abstraction — from geometry to color field techniques, and the melding of both abstraction and figuration, the exhibit also examines how modern abstraction comes into play in our contemporary art. 

Philippine Modernist Painters
Exhibiting artists include Lee Aguinaldo, Arturo Luz, Jess Ayco, Glenn Bautista, Roberto Chabet, Jon Cuyson, Lamberto Hechanova, Nestor Olarte Vinluan, Ben Maramag, Justin Nuyda, Romulo Olazo, Edgar Talusan Fernandez, and Roberto Robles.

“Elusive Edge ” runs at the Metropolitan Museum of Manila from June 13 to August 31, 2023. Visit at the Mariano K. Tan Centre, 30th St. cor. 9th Ave., Bonifacio Global City, Taguig City, Metro Manila.

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