Paseo Gallery-Megamall is honoured to host Roberto Chabet’s painting-installation ‘Chabet: Waiting in line to see the Trinity Site’, a satellite exhibition to a series of exhibitions that the artist is slated to mount this year; these shows has come to be known as the ‘birthday shows’. Working with sophisticated and unconventional art strategies that pieces together associations triggered by chosen components in forming a highly personal rebus, lending an idea to a venue or exhibit site is even a puzzle piece that the artist chooses to work with. The exhibition is a virtual alchemical synthesis of myth, memory, history and the everyday from which we can intuit the sublime.
Inviting a Beckettian reading, the exhibition title alludes to a snapshot of an endless line of vehicles parked along a lonely desert highway that belong to curious onlookers catching a glimpse of the historic landmark. Trinity is the name Oppenheimer, ‘Father of the Atomic Bomb’, christened the clandestine site for the original ground zero, where the atom was split and heralded the nuclear age. The photograph wryly captures the irony and ambiguity of a defining moment of the modern era reduced to an object of detached fascination- a tourist’s pilgrimage site to what once gave shape to a generation’s collective anxiety and hidden desires.
Accompanying the photograph are the familiar array of objects and assemblages that make up the artist’s terse but distinct visual language: painted plywood panels, clipboards, neon signs and bracketed shelves. On the clipboard are inserted pages of interior shots of cathedral domes that allude to the architectural structure of heaven. Ensconced between the shelves are a series of discs painted red yellow and blue- they are analogous references the celestial spheres of Andreas Cellarius’ ‘Harmony of the Cosmos’ that map the cosmology of Ptolemy, Copernicus and Brahe. Neon arrow signs act us cryptic signposts that cue us into the hidden poetry of his perplexing geometrical constructs and the understated romanticist streak behind the conceptualist trapping that perpetually seeks the magnificent and the marvellous in the humdrum of everyday life.
He is the country’s foremost conceptual artist and is arguably the most influential figure in the local art scene for the last two decades, nurturing and guiding the artistic development of some of the most relevant and exciting artists to emerge in recent years. In a class of his own, Chabet is a virtual artistic barometer or yardstick by which local contemporary artists, whether for or against, measure up or contend with their own craft.
Waiting in Line to see the Trinity Site opens on 24 March 2009 at Paseo Gallery-Megamall. The exhibit is on view until 13 April 2009. Gallery Hours: Monday – Friday 10:00 AM to 9:00 PM, Saturdays & Sundays 10:00 AM to 10:00PM. For enquiries please contact Paseo Gallery offices at 4th Level Building A, SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City,Philippines , 3rd Floor Glorietta 4, Ayala Center, Makati City,Philippines.Telephone Numbers: Paseo Gallery-Megamall 706-5514 / Paseo Gallery-Glorietta 728-0168, Mobile: /+63922-887-2736 / +63917-526-8082 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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