THE passage of time creates an evolution like the ageing of wine, which acquires an even richer taste every passing day. Time does the same thing to people, and as time goes by, each gets better in his respective trade, acquiring a mastery of more skills and techniques.
In his 20th solo exhibition entitled “A State of Introspection,” Sio Montera opens a part of himself to his audience which they haven’t seen before.
“It is taking a deeper look at where I am now as an artist and also as an educator. This is like a necessary pause for me to evaluate where my art making will go from here,” said Sio.
“This is like a big journal of the things that I remember and consider to be steps toward the betterment of myself and as an artist.”
With many years of experience in the art industry, Sio opens a new door. With his artworks, he intrigues his audience with a different technique, quite different from the revolution in abstraction that the younger Sio had started.
“I guess the shift in material choice and also production process also signifies the maturing of my art making or my craft,” he said.
Having used to mix asphalt with paint, he now expresses himself on the canvas using a process known as “addition by subtraction” which gives primary importance to the peeling off of paint and revealing what is hidden beneath. The peeling off is a symbolic representation that at some point shedding will give a better understanding of what was thought to have been forgotten.
“It has now led me to understand art as a universal entity. Not just a few select people can acknowledge it. It’s more global in a way that people will not have a hard time trying to dissect it. Just by looking at it, immediately they can already form their opinion because the current style is something you can see anywhere; like if you go to slums or old houses or old streets you can see a lot of these paints peeling off. It also suggests time and the colors or paints underneath each layer are trapped inside the new layers. It’s also a picture of a rich history and how culture has evolved especially in Cebu,” said Sio.
However, despite the change in technique, Sio clarifies that there is no old to compare to the new for his artworks are evidences of a continuing process.
“If not for my previous works, I would not have reached this point. It’s like I picture myself climbing a summit where along the way I pick up things and realize that this will be good for my art until finally I go to a point where I cannot do art anymore. I can look back and say that each of the collections I made was made for a specific reason so each one can be considered its own peak. Wherever I’m going in terms of how far or how high the summit is, only sky is the limit,” said Sio.
The exhibit “A State of Introspection” is located in Qube Gallery in Crossroads Banilad, Cebu City. The artworks were launched on Aug. 10 and will be displayed until Sept. 9.
Published in the SunStar Cebu newspaper on August 15, 2017.
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