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Friday, February 26, 2010

Unearthing: Womynist Bones and Sexuality

Unearthing Exhibit Poster

Womynist Bones and Sexuality

Buried under the dark crevices of our time’s hegemonies are yet tender fossils – muted, maimed, and mutilated – muffled in their screaming silence, cocooned within the gravels of subjugated worldings. But not for long…

Ten womyn womynists piece together a fearless, undulated bellowing; an eloquent kind of unearthing, to unravel bones of feminine beauty and pain, to reconstitute their place in time and space, both real and virtual. To unearth is to reveal quieted identities in a more gaping dimension to which their osseous seeds could be nourished into fertile germs – progenitors, potent and sexual so that the once faint diffusion of voices could reverberate into a piercing chorus, lyric and erotic, vivid and provocative.

This spirited collective choreography gathers in a wall’s span and in a sweeping gaze a cross-section of ideas that could somehow begin to articulate, but not to frame, the womyn’s emancipation into the breathing space of expression, unstruggling, ungasping and basking in the free air.

In their concoction of old and new media, the ten artists may have come from different milieus and cultivate different modes of artistic engagement. Yet they speak in unison as they spark this provocation to take a focal look at the feminine from her periphery. Through the poignant womynly expression, Benay Reyes bares a subtle, primordial injustice that seems to have haunted the womyn during the expanse of HIStory. She invites us to go back, look back and re-align our gaze at HERstory. Ligaya Domingo and Maan de Loyola project contrasting styles of abstractions to show a single theme: societal imbalance, the longing for human rights and social justice. AJ Tolentino makes use of both arcane myths and mass-produced pop cultural hegemonies to position the womyn in both the ancient and the current. Tif Guevara and Ivy Universe Baldoza works with every conceivable medium and form to attack the feminist subject, creating rich juxtapositions of metaphors pertaining to the feminine’s “universe” of concepts. Joan de Leon Hoffman paints it dark and real to intimate what to her are her womynist realities. Lydia Cabasco ventures into 3D spaciality through installation and collaborates with Tif Guevara as they render subliminal connections between art and the subconscious. They draw inspiration from myths and the archetype of the “skeleton woman” to explore the cycle of life, death and life. Aza Camps and Rimaq Palma complete this initial performance of unearthing with works challenged and stirred by the womyn’s sexual politics.

Longing for tender caresses, these painful yet beautiful “bones” resuscitate in these walls, their nursery beds; with the intimate light as their sun and your thoughtful gaze as their consummate lovers, sensually stroking with the eye, afflicting and loving.

In indigenous lore, women priestesses danced and stomped the earth’s virginal orifices amidst sacred chants and prayers, to awaken the soil and welcome the seeds that soon may grow into life. Now, bones become seeds of intention. Such skeletal undertakings begin the nurturing process of interrogation to amplify the actualities of the womyn, unearthed.

Behold, here unfolds a resurrection.

-Joseph Michael T. Patricio

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