around five years ago, my former boss made me design, yet again, the university's official christmas card. the official card is what gets sent by office heads to the school's friends, aka sponsors.
in christmases prior to that year, the school had some student or other make a line drawing of, invariably, the belen (pinoy for nativity scene). my former boss was partial to belens. it had to be a line drawing because we just risographed the cards. yes, that's right, risographed. the donor who gave the school seven used office folders and the donor who gave seven million pesos both got a risographed christmas card, ink streaks and all. you would have to agree that it was a very democratic system.
(about the used folders, someone really did this, promise. i know because aside from designing cards, my former work entailed keeping records of donations. but the folders were made in USA, so maybe the donor felt they were of greater value than brand new pinoy-made office supplies.)
so that card of five years ago prompted the dawn of the post-line drawing movement in christmas cards in ateneo de zamboanga university. i cannot recall anymore what the choices were, if there were any, but we decided on using isidro floreta's painting of Our Lady of Fort Pilar as cover design.
maybe we thought of it because that painting loomed over us in the president's office. it was among the first few in the university's growing collection of art by local artists. by the time that we used if for the card, it must have been with the school for five years or so. but i am not too sure about this.
that painting is now part of floreta's on-going solo exhibit at Ateneo's Gallery of the Peninsula and Archipelago (GPA), Level Eye. The new paintings are predominantly zamboanga-themed, done in sepia. There is a series of watercolors of a bird house
this birdhouse could be set anywhere in the world, but other than that, the paintings were zamboanga: city hall
and, uh, erbie fabian
don't look at me, i don't know what this is all about either.
there was one on fort pilar but the picture i have, in my opinion, does not do the painting justice, so you'll just have to do without.
on display were the paintings floreta donated to Ateneo, including the one used for that pioneering card, but everytime i click add image, nothing happens. so maybe blogger limits the number of photos i can upload. i don't know. i wish i could add two more photos, one of a girl who looks so sweet and innocent and another of an old woman which reminds me of an old masters painting. not that i know a lot about that but just take my word for it. or not.
the photos were taken and generously shared with me by eunice kanindot of the fabulous GPA. tricia, the other hero of the gallery, wasn't there when i visited, unfortunately. we always end up talking not just about the art on exhibit but about other things just as juicy.