Elmer Borlongan

An Extraordinary Eye for the Ordinary
Ground Floor Galleries | Jan 22 to Mar 28, 2018

With an extraordinary eye for the ordinary, Elmer Borlongan re-presents the Filipino going about life. A tradition that goes back to: Damian Domingo, Jose Honorato Lozano and Justiniano Asuncion whose depictions of 19th century Philippine life have come down to us as Tipos del Pais (Country Types), but where the founding fathers of this style of painting left off Borlongan set off inspired by 20th century masters: Onib Olmedo, Danilo Dalena, and Jaime de Guzman breathing new life into genre with: color, form, and a trademark humor that elevates the familiar into Art.

Inspired by the work of National Artist Carlos V. Francisco best known for his murals that highlighted slices of life from Philippine history and his own backyard in Angono, Borlongan drew his early imagery from the backstreets of Nueve de Febrero in Mandaluyong, his coming of age, in life and art, formed by the political upheavals that saw the beginning of the Marcos dictatorship in 1972 and its end in 1986. From EDSA I, II, and III to Duterte, Borlongan brought his art from urban to rural and back to the urban such that he returned to the place where he started but saw it anew, like the first time producing past, present and future merged seamlessly in his works.

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