March 07, 2022

Ayala Museum Cordially Invites You to View LIPON at the ArtistSpace from March 9-22

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  • Ayala Museum Cordially Invites You to View LIPON at the ArtistSpace from March 9-22
  • LIPON, presented by Kaida Contemporary, features six Filipino visual artists: Benjie Cabangis, Jeff T. Dizon, Neil Doloricon, Hermisanto, Nestor Vinluan, and Junyee. It will be on view at the ArtistSpace from March 9-22, 2022.

    An exhibition years in the making, Lipon was scheduled before the pandemic set the world teetering on an unprecedented global health crisis. Now, as we emerge from the dark clouds of listlessness and imposed restraints, it is only fitting to look to works of art that can bring the flush of health back to our greyed-out collective perception.

    IMAGE from Ayala Museum

    Lipon in the local vernacular defines how individuals come together to converse and pursue discourse in contribution to a larger dialogue on society; a meticulously selected collection of paintings signify this gathering, proudly presented in this timely exhibition that traces not only creative manifestations from the past, but also highlights the divergent paths the artists have taken on their journey to self-expression and social commentary.

    Benjie Cabangis, Jeff T. Dizon, Neil Doloricon, Hermisanto, Nestor Vinluan, and Junyee were first introduced to each other during their studies at the University of the Philippines College of Fine Arts, and may count themselves among the most decorated and prolific of their generation. They were also fast friends who considered themselves comrades-in- arts, with each immersed in student activism with varying levels of participation. As they reminisced on their glory days and the life lessons they learned through experience and the passage of time, a schedule was set for a show of force to enliven the Philippine art scene with the presence of their works.

    IMAGE from Ayala Museum

    Nestor Vinluan’s free flowing ink and pigments on paper make their appearance, deviating from his series of zen-rooted spheres and large expanses of paint. Lively, energetic and chromatic, impressions dance across the white surface, set in waves, crisscrossed, and visually replicated. Benjie Cabangis’ pieces evoke trance-like escapes into otherworlds, with cool colors and lightness dominating his pieces. While some viewers may perceive shadowy islands mysteriously making themselves visible through fog, others see a play of light projected on clouds mid-flight.

    Palm fronds and palay husks still populate Hermisanto’s works, flattened and given a more contemporary portrayal. In addition, new vividly hued pieces expounding on the ebb and flow of paint are skillfully layered by the artist on canvas. Junyee’s chiaroscuro play on soot reveals his experimental nature and penchant for using materials otherwise neglected, as he masterfully leaves out areas of the canvas to portray blinding brightness in the midst of smoke and shadows, punctuating his pieces with a brazen display showing deep, passionate red.

    IMAGE from Ayala Museum

    Jeff T. Dizon’s foray into figurative images are underscored by his repetitive use of a children’s cartoon character reshaped to match the elongated limbs of his graceful minstrels playing various musical instruments and party favors; lighthearted and exuberant, they even boast of steadfast four-legged companions. Neil Doloricon’s paintings, however, portray themes closest to his heart and his principles, with barely hidden animalistic tendencies employed by the powerful feasting on the weak, the innocent, and even themselves, set on a table bolstered by figures donning military boots. Sakadas for sugarcane, their heavy loads of bundled stalk bending with the unspoken burdens of cheap labor create a pattern of alternating waves, with a mill spewing plumes of waste burnoffs into the sky.

    IMAGE from Ayala Museum

    For Cabangis, Lipon represents a collective consciousness reflective and critical of today’s social contexts and climates, and aims for artistic expression to be regarded as a chorus of voices wanting to be heard, much like his layered works that fold, unravel, and rend the silent and flat canvas. For Hermisanto, it is more than artists from different disciplines coming together: it is a collective stand that strives for the creative and artistic industries to pursue common grounds of elevating the national consciousness to greater heights. For Junyee, being part of lipon or lipunan (society) means having a voice for freedom and revolution. It might take on different forms over the years, but an ardent desire for irreproachable change never wavers.

    IMAGE from Ayala Museum

    Lipon also features several of Doloricon’s posthumous works that show the sharpness of his brushstrokes when it comes to depicting what ills and ails society. It is only fitting for his legacy to be honored in a tribute amongst friends.

    IMAGE from Ayala Museum

    “Lipon is the stage to awaken and nurture one’s moral, patriotic conscience and consciousness as a Filipino,” according to Dizon, as art is never a passive thing hanging on a wall; now more than ever, it is a weapon that incites and invites questions, evokes emotions, and continues a profound and penetrating conversation.

    LIPON will be on view at the ArtistSpace located at Ground Level, Ayala Museum Annex, Makati Avenue corner De La Rosa Street, Greenbelt Park, Makati City from March 9-22, 2022. The gallery is open daily from 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Admission is FREE.

    For queries on the exhibition, you may call or e-mail Ms. Aida dela Peña at 0927-929-7129 or

    This is a press release. Minor edits were made prior to publishing.

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