When Art gets a Fashion translation

by United Blogs of Benetton on: Junio 20th, 2010

An unlikely pair indeed: punk-inspired fashion designer Tina Daniac and national artist Ben Cabrera, known simply as Bencab.

For the recently concluded Philippine Fashion Week Holiday 2010, Tina collaborated with the popular painter for the second half of her collection. She focused on Bencab’s most famous muse, “Sabel”, whom he has portrayed and reinterpreted in his works across the decades.

“Sabel” is a name the artist has a real-life scavenger he photographed and sketched way back in 1965. Her image has been a medium for the expression of various moods, always with the flow and volume of fabrics signaling different emotions.

So it may only seem natural that Tina Daniac picked Bencab for her latest artist collaboration. But this may be true for other designers, and not for Tina, whose edgy creations appear in sharp contrast to Bencab’s untamed representations. What she has done in adopting a different design language is pay homage to both the muse and the artist.

Whatever one may say of the effectivity or creativity of Tina’s translation, this collaboration appears as a welcome direction towards more partnerships between designers and artists.

Who knows what kind of clothes can be produced using the imagery of the works of fellow national artist Ang Kiukok?



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 The Raw Emotions of Ang Kiukok

by United Blogs of Benetton on: Abril 10th, 2010

(Angry Figure)

Tangled nets with fish like swords that are as sharp as the fishermen’s hungry and contorted shoulders. Vicious dogs that gnaw at each other’s necks, cantankerous chickens brandishing their claws.

(Fishermen with Catch – The Lovers – Fighting Figures)

These are just some of the violent images that are part of the aesthetic language of Filipino-Chinese painter and national artist Ang Kiukok.

They go beyond mere angst and repressed emotion; they dig holes deeper than the source. I believe that Ang Kiukok is foremost a Filipino painter, and his art a Filipino medium, because his paintings uncover common feelings borne from the same experiences.

(Fish – Fisherman)

He has expressed, even in the originally foreign tools of cubism and expressionism, the collective anger, alienation, and suffering unique to the history of the Philippines-such as the specific event of Martial Law under President Marcos
and the general predicament of poverty caused by centuries of backwardness.

(Crucifixion – Clowns – Mother and Son)

Of course, his works also express the universal, if only seen through the eyes of a nation: a man on fire, limbs entangled in fatal combat or twisted and broken into each other in the embrace of love.

(The Last Supper)

There are angles and edges to the righteous faces of apostles, to the bond and burden between mother and child, the bones and maws of fish, the limbs of desert horses. Finally, Kiukok expresses the machination of what is human by showing the industrially hammered, nailed, cut, welded, sliced, and broken body of the man on the crucifix. We all share in that silent and anguished cry, in tears that run from empty sockets.

El Bosquejo


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