Othoniel “Otto” Neri presents his solo exhibition titled
“Convergence” at Galerie Anna, opening on May 18, 2017.
A conflict of cultures, between the East and the West,
manifesting itself in the Great Divide, engendering the turmoil
and tension both in the physical geo-political space and the
psychic polarities of colonial consequences, is at the core of
Neri’s recent works. But the seeming irreconcilability provoked
by the direct contact between two opposing forces is mollified
by the positive outlook of the hopeful theme “Convergence.”
Neri views the lessons of the country’s history through the
prism of a nativist’s pop sensibility, drawn with the imprint of
typical Pinoy humor that, for instance, transmogrifies the
legendary Mactan hero Lapu-Lapu into the chefs’ favorite fish.
In “Resistance,” the giant-esque fish proceeds to feast on the
unwelcome Portuguese explorer and island intruder.
In “Disoriented,” the artist’s Pop humor alludes to Andy
Warhol and his Marilyn Monroe, with her perpetually half-
opened luscious mouth and mounds of seductive flesh, even as
the dark-skinned tribes are flummoxed into a state of pent-up
Another Pop icon, the Mona Lisa in “What Keeps You
Smiling,” depicts the mysterious Florentine lady in the company
of the native indias, in a symbolic hybridity of our country’s
culture, a mixed in-breeding of Oriental and Western influences
that have shaped the character and culture of the race. Indeed,
a large work “The Culprits,” even panders to the Pinoy joke
adverting to the killers of Lapu-Lapu, the chefs as salivating
tribesmen around a boiling cauldron.
Closer to the nerve is “Back Off,” which touches on the
currently simmering geopolitical conflict in the South China
sea, and where the artist chooses to depict the festive and
gaily-colored Dragon Dance as it slowly but surely inches its
way into Philippine territory.
In an irreverent seizing of our unique native sensibility,
referencing history as a Pop granary of images, Othoniel “Otto”
Neri, while not resolving the paradoxes of history, nonetheless
celebrates with his own delicious cauldron of Pinoy
The show runs until June 2.
Galerie Anna is at the 4/L, The Artwalk, Bldg. A, SM
Megamall, EDSA corner Julia Vargas Avenue, Mandaluyong City.
For inquiries, call tel nos: 470-2511 and 470-9869. Mobile:
0939-9127932 and 0936-7139212. Website: