De Pio on shaping stories

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    Amaterasu To Kinkei (Amaterasu and the Golden Rooster)
    Amaterasu To Kinkei (Amaterasu and the Golden Rooster)

    JAPANESE pottery plays between passionate perfection and sentimental faults. This paradox of creation has inspired contemporary visual artist Vincent de Pio for his sixth solo exhibit “Chapters in Jars”. De Pio plays with the idea of control in preparing the raw materials, shaping jars, and firing them; and the freedom in choosing their purpose and the narratives they have yet to contain.

    Represented in both paintings on canvas and jars are deities and mythological creatures like Amaterasu or the Sun Goddess set against an idyllic Japanese panorama.

    Jorogumo (Spider Demon Disguised as a Beautiful Woman)
    Jorogumo (Spider Demon Disguised as a Beautiful Woman)

    Japanese icons like the kaiju, samurai and geisha are prevalent in most of his jar-artworks, hinting at fantasies—chapter after chapter of what was once unknown with the artist forming part of the cycle of narration. For the artist, this is the paradox of creation: that all new stories have to be old stories in order to be human, and that, here, emotions such as sadness and fear, love and kindness, calmness and excitement are realized.

    “Chapters in Jars” uses traditional Japanese pottery molded, shaped, and glazed into realization just as much as stories are.

    Kitsune (The Shape Shifting Fox)
    Kitsune (The Shape Shifting Fox)

    An alumnus of the University of the Philippines College of Fine Arts, De Pio is known for his energetic brushstrokes and unapologetic style, a manifestation of his vivacious personality and humor. Endlessly inspired by the aesthetic and mindset of the Japanese, he is one of the most sought-after artists of his generation, having exhibited at ManilArt, Art Stage Jakarta, Singapore Biennale, and Art Kaohsiung. A finalist in the GSIS National Art Competition, and the Metrobank Art Competition, as well as an auction favorite in Hong Kong and Singapore, he has participated in over 20 group shows, and five solo exhibitions, his last being “The Courtesan and the Warrior” at Art Formosa, Taipei 2018.

    “Chapters in Jars” will have its artist’s reception on January 18 (Saturday), 6pm at Galerie Stephanie located at the 4th floor East Wing of Shangri-La Plaza, Mandaluyong. It will be up for view from January 14 to 28.