“Unravelling Bettina: Epiphany” at Arte Bettina

Arte Bettina’s intriguing concept of “Unravelling” originates from the awareness that art is not always what it seems; and that a visible icon contains within it, in varying states of intricacy, complexity, or obscurity, specific meanings and messages that must be drawn or puzzled out from a welter of disparate or unrelated images.

That unexpected moment when the woven psychic threads are finally disentangled is an experience known as epiphany. When it comes cannot be predicted or controlled. It is, too, the inspiration behind the latest unfolding of Arte Bettina, which opens on November 5.

Epiphany comes from the Greek word epiphanea, meaning “manifestation, striking appearance.” It is also known as enlightenment or, in Zen Buddhism, satori.

Participating artists are: Gerry Joquico, Jr., Gary Joquico, Grae Joquico, CJ Tanedo, Tyago Almario, Thirdy Bustamante, Joel Chavez, JM Saycon, and Miller Laberinto. The show is curated by Gerry Joquico, Jr.

The show unravels such perplexing works as Tyago Almario’s curious portrait of twin girls in identical lacy dresses, aloft on a pedestal, as though they were a pair of living sculptures up for bidding; or Joel Chavez’s “Transcend,” a churning and whirling regurgitation of a marble sculpture metamorphosing into a still undetermined shape of form.

Recalling the poet T. E. Eliot’s “Whispers of Immortality” is JM Gascon’s “Cloud Nine” with the foreboding lines: “Webster was much possessed by death/ And saw the skull beneath the skin.” Following suit is Thirdy Bustamante’s “Imago,” a lovely woman indishabille, undraping the chalk-white skeleton within.

As an existentialist chronicler once observed: “Which of us, at some point, has not seen through the vitality of human existence and been gripped by the sudden realization that beneath it all, we are mere skeletons, and life is just a brief interlude in our longer period of inexistence.”

Not only skeletons in the closet, but other life-changing everyday occurrences and experiences, will suddenly strike the viewers of “Unravelling Bettina: Epiphany.”

The show runs until November 24.Arte Bettina is at the 3/L, Greenbelt 5, Ayala Center, Makati City. For inquiries, call: 8-551-3086.    

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