TRI • ANGLES
Just exactly what is a piece of sculpture?
Of course, you do know what it is, (and it’s not just the statue of National Hero Jose Rizal in our town plazas!) but here is one reply to the question you may not have heard of:
“A sculpture is what you bump into, as you back up to get a look at a painting.”
Beyond the un-intended caustic wit and humor of the statement, it reflects the real state of the art of sculpture: regarded as secondary in importance to painting, with the public’s lamentable lack of appreciation.
No less than National Artist Luz remarked on how, way back in the Sixties, he himself had “strayed” into the field of sculpture. Said Luz: “My sculptures are the logical extension of my paintings.” Indeed, he had predicted that “the next boom in Philippine art will be sculpture, and this was precisely the time when one day, I looked around suddenly realized that the Philippines had only two or three sculptors to speak of, which I find very strange. We have a tremendous amount of materials to speak of.”
Helping to realize the predicted boom in Philippine sculpture is the Galerie Anna-organized show at the SM Megamall Art Center. Titled “Tri-Angles,” the show presents the recent works of the country’s emerging and established sculptors.
“Tri-Angles” emphasizes the appreciation of materials as material, as these sculptures make use of the traditional processes of modeling, casting, carving, constructing, and assembling, as well as an intermingling of these techniques. As well, various themes and temperaments are embodied in these sculptures that all address humanist emotion.
In distinguishing our appreciation of sculpture versus that of painting, it is well to remember what the critic Max Kozloff said: “Sculpture is ultimately an independent, volumetric entity. It is tangible, occupies a fixed space, and is in a specific state of matter, facts from which every sculptor has been obliged to make his point of departure.”
-Cid Reyes, Art Critic and Curator