Art, Exhibit, Lobby, Museum, UP Vargas Museum, West Wing Gallery (Edge)

The Collection of Jane Ryan and William Saunders | Pio Abad

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The Collection of Jane Ryan and William Saunders | Pio Abad

28 August to 30 September 2014 | Exhibition opening: Thursday, 28 August at 6 P.M.

GF Lobby and West Wing Galleries

Abad employs strategies of appropriation to reveal the social and political significations of objects, unraveling the circumstances in which artworks and commodities are made, presented and exchanged.

A large concrete sculpture of primeval folklore stands at a tangent to its diminutive source, rendering it a figurine of an original. An array of postcards of a seized and sequestered collection is finally for the taking. And a painting on a miracle of fishes, supposedly by Tintoretto, hangs on a panel papered over by the image of a repeating octopus.

The folklore is Malakas at Maganda, the first man and woman of the Philippine earth, claimed by Ferdinand and Imelda Marcos as their doppelgangers, the genesis itself of a new nation. The artist is Anastacio Caedo, a sculptor t of classical bent known for historical monuments and commemorative busts. The disputed trove consists of exceptional Regency silver and eclectic European art peddled at Christie’s in 1991. The painting is The Miraculous Drought of Fishes by the Renaissance master Tintoretto, auctioned and then returned on account of uncertain authenticity. And the motif of the hideous mollusk comes from a book titled Some Are Smarter Than Others by Ricardo Manapat, which details the breathtaking property of the Marcoses by way of what its author calls “crony capitalism.”

Pio Abad choreographs these things and the tales animating them to initiate a critical conversation on the discourses of singularity, surplus, and semblance. He looks at them as traces of something sordid, a body of evidence that exhibits morbid symptoms of a possible psychopathology of power.

The Collection of Jane Ryan and William Saunders is presented in partnership with Gasworks, London where Abad will have his first major UK solo exhibition from September 12 to November 9, 2014.

Pio Abad (b. 1983, Manila) graduated from the College of Fine Arts at the University of the Philippines in 2004. He further pursued a degree in Painting and Printmaking at Glasgow School of Art in 2007 and received his Masters degree in Fine Arts at the Royal Academy Schools in London in 2012. He was finalist in the recently concluded Ateneo Art Awards and Deutsche Bank Art Awards in 2012. He received artist residency grants from Scottish Arts Council Creative and Professional Development Fund, Bloomberg New Contemporaries and Studio Project 10 among others. He has had exhibitions in the Philippines, Hong Kong, Scotland, England, Denmark and Germany.

For more information, please contact Vargas Museum at (+632) 928-1927 (direct line), (+632) 981-8500 loc. 4024 (UP trunkline), (+632) 928-1925 (fax) or send an e-mail to vargasmuseum@gmail.com. You may also check our website at http://vargasmuseum.upd.edu.ph or like us at www.facebook.com/vargasmuseum.upd and follow us @UPVargasMuseum for quick updates.

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About Jorge B. Vargas Museum

It aims to preserve its collection donated by Jorge B. Vargas and conducts research, exhibitions, publications, and educational programs. The Vargas Museum and Filipiniana Research Center houses a museum, archives, and library devoted to the Philippine history, art, and culture from the late 19th century until the post-war era. Its main beneficiaries are students, faculty, researchers and scholars of the Philippines and Asia.

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