By Leriecka Endico
“Tirada” exhibition celebrates the 50th year of the Philippine Association of Printmakers (PAP), sustaining the art of printmaking founded in 1968. Printmaking, also known as Graphic Art, is a process of creating multiple images on a matrix or plate, which is normally on paper. However, printmaking is not a mere photographic reproduction of a painting or image, as it has different categories that showcase its element of originality: Relief Printing, Intaglio, Drypoint, Etching, Mezzotint, Aquatint, Lithography/Planography, Serigraphy/Screen printing, New media and Iris Print/Giclee prints.
As defined among printmakers, this year’s commemoration entitled “Tirada” signifies strike as in to pull off or pull out a piece of work in a series of multiples. It also covers the literal meaning of the word as a decisive action to revisit history and reflect in confronting the issues that the practice of printmaking in our country currently faces such as seeing print as minor and commercial form of art.
Patrick Flores the curator of this year’s exhibit, “Tirada” addressed the role and value of printmaking as a medium. “Printmaking as a distinct form. This distinction derives from its language, techniques, technologies, artistic skills and styles, media, modes of circulation. Beyond affirming the known modes of printmaking practice, how does the practice of the printmaker challenge the boundaries of the language of the art form? What is the impulse and intentionality of this effort? How does it demonstrate quality, mastery, and innovation? Printmaking as a socially sensitive medium. … Is it interested in the problems of class, gender, ethnicity, political and spiritual belief? How does it act on this interest? Printmaking as a practice keen on understanding itself as a form and its conceptual basis and possibility. Printmaking as a moment in modernism and contemporary art. Printmaking as a vital part of the matrix of the popular culture with strong relationships with the comics, advertising, photography, mass media, and related forms.
Apparently, the art of printmaking in our country has a long way to go in paving its path, sustaining its form, breaking the stereotype as a minor of art and adapting in an ever evolving culture and arts.
Meanwhile, according to the organization “We…believe in the analogue process of printmaking. In the process of the art of print making, the artist alone is responsible for the painstaking road to the process, from designing, to inking, and finally to printing. Without following the flow of this process, it does not belong to the category of fine printmaking. It is the feel, the touch, and the smell of printers’ ink, petroleum, and the paper that fascinates us. A printmaker must experience the process of editioning in order for him/her to be called a true blue-blood printmaker.”
Some of the artists included in this monumental exhibition are Pacita Abad, Chris Bayani, BenCab, Orlando Castillo, Mitzi Reyes, Mars Bugaoan, Manuel Ocampo, Rhoda Recto, Ileana Lee, Gab Ferrer, Yas Doctor, Mia Herbosa, Butch Dalisay, Jean Dee, Jade Hoyer, Lito Mayo, Fil Delacruz, Jose Joya, Lee Paje, Gerry Torres, Glenn Bautista, Manny Arriola, Gig de Pio, Boy Gozum, Raul Isidro, Al Manrique, and Nicole Coson among others.
The exhibit opened on Saturday from 4PM-8PM and will run until July 15 at the Bulwagang Juan Luna (Main Gallery), Pasilyo Vicente Manansala and Pasilyo Guillermo Tolentino (2&3/F Hallway Galleries), CCP Main Theater Bldg. Viewing hours will be from Tuesday-Sunday, 10am-6pm.
For more information, you may contact the Visual Arts and Museum Division, Production and Exhibition Department at (632) 832-1125 local 1504/1505 and (632) 832-3702, mobile (0917) 6033809, email firstname.lastname@example.org , or visit: www.culturalcenter.gov.ph.