Had the title and portray fashion of Ivan Acuña neither been celebrated nor sought soon after in the artwork scene for more than 20 years, The Sunday Times Journal would have mistaken him for a top-notch chef the day this interview took position.
This kind of was the scene: Somewhat than sitting down down to solution thoughts, Acuña magically whipped out a transportable stove and a pan from nowhere in this wonderful drawing room of an old New Manila mansion.
“I am cooking!” he buoyantly introduced, “and we are heading to try to eat!”
Acuña apparently just bought the house in excess of the pandemic and was nevertheless in the process of determining which antique parts he needed to retain or discard. At the very same time, portion of his amazing Filipino Masters assortment sat all-around sofas, chairs and floors, waiting to be hung on the partitions.
Acuña then began rummaging by some grocery luggage he had when he arrived at the appointment and busily unpacked his substances. For the subsequent 15 minutes or so, he bought to perform on the stove that will have to have been put atop an age-outdated narra table.
Renowned for his Metal Scapes collection, the summary artist claims he only paints what he likes and believes that his
genuine, particular and uncomplicated technique in building art is that which can make his will work accesible to absolutely everyone
Hunting happy and completely at ease, Acuña’s arms moved gracefully amid his reliable develop as he included one particular ingredient soon after a further into the scorching, steaming pan. And as he stirred in what seemed from afar like a medley of delicate, colourful ribbons and shapes, he looked like the renowned summary expressionist he is yet again. With a spatula for a brush and a pan for a canvas, he before long sufficient served splendor on a plate.
Who knew seafood pasta could look like a do the job of artwork?
A visual artist, in fact, even when he cooks, Acuña doubles as that greatest-held solution chef again at the very first vibrant burst of flavors his divine 10-moment pasta dish would make in the mouth.
Now that complete scene is really worth documenting at size simply because it encapsulates who and what this acclaimed modern artist is all about.
Ivan Acuña is a rockstar. He is a rockstar who does what he pleases and does it to the hilt. Acuña life lifetime as massive as his wall-to-wall and ground-to-ceiling paintings that famously cling in the most effectively-appointed building lobbies in the nation. He is deeply passionate about his artwork but under no circumstances will allow it to consume him.
That is why he cooks like a chef du jour when he wishes to, revs up his motorcycle anytime wanderlust hits, coolly operates numerous prosperous companies and investments like a carnival juggler, and immerses himself in meeting as many attention-grabbing individuals as he can.
Acuña is a rockstar for the reason that even though he is deeply passionate about his artwork, he refuses to be eaten by it and concede to the quintessential artiste persona.
“Hindi ako yung artificial artwork na could sarili silang mundo at sila-sila lang,” he bravely declared. “Ako, my art is for all people. I stay in the globe. I am honored, content and content no matter if my painting falls into the hands of a prestigious art collector or a initial-time artwork customer. I’m a individuals human being, so this is how it really should be, even with my will work.”
Guitar person to lensman
Ivan Acuña could have been pretty much a rockstar had his deep enthusiasm for the visible arts failed to lure him absent from his guitar. Imagine it or not, he began university at the University of the Philippines’ Higher education of Audio in the mid-’80s.
A satisfied-go-fortunate guitar main, it took a concert at the Cultural Centre of the Philippines, exactly where his batch shared the stage with a prime visiting Spanish guitarist, to convince Acuña he must be someplace else.
“It was a no cost concert and free of charge live performance na nga, wala pang nanood!” he recalled in disbelief. “I informed myself, ‘Wala yatang potential dito, teka muna,’ but I still play the guitar right now anytime I truly feel like it. Classical guitar mainly,” he connected.
Shifting to Good Arts, his desire in the aesthetics was piqued by means of his friendship with Alex Baldovino, son of famed Filipino photographer Dick Baldovino. The senior Baldovino also happens to be the nephew of Acuña’s would-be most substantial art influence, Philippine National Artist Jose Joya.
From then on, thriving in his new ecosystem, Acuña needed very little else but to be in the visual arts.
“I bought into photography and turned really near to Alex’s father. So by 1988, I was privileged to be eventually functioning with Mr. Dick Baldovino.”
The staple selection of Nationwide Artists when publishing their espresso desk books, Acuña excitedly had a share of the action when Baldovino was commissioned for the images of Artwork Philippines: A record, 1521-present by Juan Gatbonton, Jeannie Javelosa and Lourdes Ruth Roa. Posted by The Crucible Workshop in 1992, it is considered these days as a single of the most thorough textbooks on Philippine Artwork Heritage to day.
Acuña’s photos ended up last featured in Nationwide Artist Benedicto Cabrera’s espresso table ebook, Bencab, posted in 2002.
Under no circumstances 1 to restrict himself to any fascination or endeavor, Acuña at some point felt it was time to take a look at what he had been quietly executing all along his occupation as a professional photographer and went entire throttle in portray.
Acuña’s recent and continuing success as an abstract impressionist ensued unconventionally, much too, of training course. A believer in excellent timing inspite of his carefree methods, he experienced retained canvasses of huge, bold and colourful strokes concealed in his studio way previous the ’80s, aware that the Philippine artwork scene was still unready to value contemporary art.
“Figurative artwork was dominant at that time, and I realized summary impressionism wouldn’t survive,” Acuña discussed.
The social animal that he is, Acuña enjoyed a various circle of pals who would become crucial in unveiling his arresting and awe-inspiring model of art.
“Commonly, a typical artist’s established up in the Philippines is like this: they go to a gallery to utilize to come to be an in-home artist, or a curator could possibly hunt for them if they’re fortunate the gallery likes their perform. But bear in mind, a one gallery will exhibit as several as 30 to 120 artists. In fact, you are not offering since masuwerte ka if you can exhibit once a yr or even after every two many years,” the gregarious painter elaborated.
“What happened in my scenario is I was lucky adequate that my atmosphere was outdoors the usual artist’s atmosphere. ‘Di ba generally ang artist pag nag-opening, naka-upo lang then lalapit yung may well-ari ng gallery and yung curator nag-invite ng consumer to make introductions with the artist.”
Shaking his head, Acuña ongoing, “Ako hindi, baliktad. I invite prospective buyers to my show since I know them all. I really don’t need to have a curator simply because ako yung nasa harap welcoming the visitors.”
Ivan Acuña is definitely a rockstar in Philippine art as a major drive in
summary impressionism, and nonetheless his unconventional strategies of traversing daily life
and dwelling massive can be considered the very same way as well.
His non-standard solution to acquiring his get the job done out there and, most importantly, bought has resulted in exhibits mounted in luxury vehicle showrooms like Porsche, Ford, Lotus and Ferrari.
Certainly, Acuña is also a collector of vintage automobiles and expensively sweet rides, so every little thing worked out.
He was also really close to the inside style glitterati that the likes of Budgi Layug began working his artworks in 2001. Suffice it to say, Acuña’s renown sped more rapidly than his athletics cars and trucks so that his title and art became leading of mind of a lot of architects and designers these types of as Gil Cosculuela and Anton Mendoza for their developing assignments here and overseas.
Just do it
“Like I stated earlier, I am just blessed sufficient that I grew up in Makati, which experienced the acquiring energy when I started providing my artworks. You know, how the regular artist requirements to go to a gallery before they can go to the collector? Ako, I’m now with the collector simply because they shaped my atmosphere,” Acuña recapped.
“Fortunately, as well, I did fantastic with summary and come to feel very good when carrying out summary, so I like to make it huge,” imparted the artist whose most sizeable operate to day magnificently hangs at the Diamond Hotel, measuring 16 feet by 16 feet.
Acuña’s summary style is acquainted to the privileged and
doing the job class alike with a lot of main establishments
exhibiting his pieces on their partitions.
Given the non-conventional path to his achievement, nevertheless, Acuña clarified he doesn’t imply that artists with no accessibility to privileged circles will have hopeless careers.
For this rockstar, whose tactic to everyday living is to simply enjoy regardless of what he is performing at the second as significantly as he can, Acuña’s guidance may well look unorthodox, but he promises it will make perception if a person tries a distinct outlook for a moment.
“The youthful artists nowadays assume much too deeply about creating artwork, lalo na yung tinatawag nila na surealismo. The way I see it and the way I do it, creating art won’t have to be intricate,” Acuña recommended.
The UP Wonderful Arts graduate, printed photographer
and sought-soon after artist is 100 p.c a individuals human being
and significantly from the archetypal moody artiste persona —
it has completed him well in all his endeavors.
“I paint for myself and generate what helps make me pleased or what moves me, which is all. And I feel that’s why my artwork is accessible and why people today enjoy my paintings.”
Simply call him a rockstar or a rebel, but like it or not Ivan Acuña is internationally revered as a big figure in the abstract expressionist motion of the nation. And however he gleefully uses the identical arms for his art in peeling garlic, chopping onions and deshelling seafood when he fancies his special pasta. And additional so, he has a blast sharing his delectable creation with buddies aged and new, just as he relishes featuring his visual creations to all people.
“You do not have to be too significant to thrive as an artist. When you open up your self up to men and women — unlike confining you to the quote, unquote ‘artworld’ na may well sariling mundo — you will see that major items can happen.”