Grace A. Ng delves into discoveries to be made in Ombok Villamor’s abstract imagery.
The level of focus and attention to detail that the macro lens allows is what Ombok replicates in his lush compositions, which recall a variety of subjects, be it coral reefs, sea anemones, or floral blooms. The natural patterns and textures of corals – folds, grooves, ridges, and crevices – are rendered abstract and inscrutable in his paintings. Light emanates from within, bringing still images to life and seeming to add the third dimension.
Ombok’s unique form of Abstract Expressionism has evolved through his contemplation of the environment and his curiosity for the mysterious occurrences surrounding it. His works engage creativity and prompt us to locate familiar contexts in ambiguous life forms.
It also speaks to us in a profound way, inspiring wondrous discovery and a deep appreciation for Mother Earth.
The more we examine the immensity of nature’s mysteries, the more we see ourselves as a small but vital part of the universe.
The splendor and spectacle of his pieces elicit amazement and awe. Ombok engages in a mostly instinctive and gestural method, submitting to internal whims while sustaining concentration. The more unplanned or incidental the elements are, the more dream-like and stirring the fancies may be. From this intricate balance of shapes and spaces, and arrangement of color and form, amorphous images are manifested.
The fluidity of Ombok’s paintings tells a story. They imply symbols of lived experience through ideas of ripple effects and visions of what lies beneath the surface. Fluidity also suggests tranquility as the viewer begins to feel sublime peace, similar to how the underwater landscape brings a sense of calm and clarity. The paintings give significance to the element of water, so integral to our being but often taken for granted.
Allegorical in tone, Ombok’s artworks shift between certainty and illusion, the physical and conceptual. Warmth and energy flow from his ethereal paintings, as swaths of rich color convey pulsating vibrance. The artist’s oeuvre is characterized by fascinating abstractions of life forms.
The resulting paintings are organic narratives that bring out the colorful dynamism of a hidden world. This is in keeping with Ombok’s own explorations of nature, particularly his experience of living on the shores of his native Samar. The paintings are most reminiscent of sea-life – a direct link to his roots – but they also celebrate the delights of other living things.
The artist’s body of work builds upon the idea that art can illuminate nature and stimulate the imagination. In the face of chaos and uncertainty in this world, Ombok’s art addresses humanity’s desire for positivity and enchantment. His works reconnect us to the natural world yet leave space for the divine unknown. Ombok Villamor is a product of North West Samar State University, where he graduated with a degree in Architecture.
A professional graphic artist, he has gained recognition from different award-giving bodies, including being a Finalist in the Non-Representational Category at the 2015 GSIS Art Competition, and Semi-Finalist in the oil category at the 2002 Art Petron National Student Art Competition.