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Monday, July 06, 2009

Ebarle's Pinagmulan Exhibit @ UST Museum

One Woman Exhibit
Jane Arrieta Ebarle
July 4, 2009 to August 1, 2009

Opening on July 4, 2009 at the UST Museum is Jane Arrieta Ebarle’s second one-woman exhibition titled “Pinagmulan”. This exhibit will feature paintings that continue to be stirred by the art of indigenous Filipinos. Resplendent in bold colors of blue, yellow, red and green, her latest series displays her sensitivity to the motifs found in their art. Coming from outside the villages of these largely unknown artists, Ebarle not only borrows from them. She also pays homage to them.

In her recent paintings, the influence of patterns and colors she has seen in both traditional and contemporary textiles, pottery, baskets and even paintings of Filipinos sometimes identified as ethnic groups is vital. This time she does not only salute the intricate patterns in the art of the Maranao, she embellishes them with a layer of tracery that is distinctively hers. The energy and passion palpable in her paintings seem to indicate a creativity that she must have recently rediscovered is in her. Finally Ebarle is coming out as an artist even if ironically she shrouds her paintings in veins of veneer.

This bold move began a few years ago when the artist decided to devote more time to her craft. Ebarle has joined several group exhibitions in the past. Her themes then focused on female figures in various forms such as dancers in the middle of a movement or women in repose. She adapted a style akin to impressionists. It was also during this period when she became a more active member of the Kasibulan, the only women artists’ organization in the Philippines.

These were familiar subjects she has created from her college years when in between working for her degree in advertising arts at the renowned University of Santo Tomas College of Architecture and Fine Arts, Ebarle would dabble on painting. Her personal circumstances, such as taking on a full time career plus motherhood, did not deter her determination. But eventually like many women artists like her, being a painter needed to be temporarily cast aside.

Having achieved professionally in her career (Ebarle manages the marketing of Faber-Castell in the Philippines), having advanced her education (she is finishing her MA in Women and Development at the University of the Philippines), with her children grown and deciding careers of their own, she is at last able to return to her painting. Perhaps it is her involvement in the Philippine Art Educators Association of which she is now president that has spurred her drive to paint with fervor.

“Pinagmulan” is an exceptional homage to indigenous art. It is also a testament to an artist’s determination to articulate her inspiration and find the vocabulary to evoke the creative energy she has found from art made by fundamentally unknown artists.

(The UST Museum of Arts and Sciences is located at Mezzanine Level, Main Bldg. UST, Espana, Manila. The exhibition will run until August 1, 2009. For details, please call UST Museum 781-1815.)

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