Playing the Music of the Earth thru Visual Art
Giving voice to the Earth is a mystery that only a chosen few have uncovered, for it requires different level of listening. Some echoes nature through music, some through visual art; but for Joon Claudio he does both.
Voices of ‘NTT’
In his recent show ‘NTT’, he reflects on these voices and translates them visually. He seems to have tapped into his deep connection to the Earth, as it shows on his choice of tones – brown like the soil of different shade depending on its wealth. In “Boy with a Flute” he creates a figure of a boy offering his music to nature. The audience sees nature at first glance while the flautist emerges slowly to sight, like the swelling melody his instrument develops. In “Toto Prinsipe”, the playful figure of a boy smiles as his yellow crown floats in the same earthly brown that the rest of the painting in this series have. “Pangaluyag” tells a story of love between different colors bound by the glow of love in gold and red.
The paintings in this series are embodiment of telluric entities, with the pieces which seemed as if they are painted with the ground as the canvas.
Joon Claudio and his definition of art
Joon Claudio spent 14 years in Paris, before moving to Iloilo with his wife and two sons. After three years of living in the city, he has decided to present his art to the local audience.
I formally met him when he walked into Casa Real Gallery wearing his usual smile that gets people talking. He opened the interview by asking me “what is art?”. Having told by many artists and having read a few books, I struggled to provide an answer. Joon Claudio gamely explained his basic definition of art “art is not nature, nature is not art”. A tree is not art, but if man creates something from that tree, it becomes art. It does simplify this word that has been grandly defined by enthusiasts, critics and patrons. This definition also helps us understand where his art originated.
As a musician with Waling-Waling Band in the 80’s, he played music as tribute to the environment. As a visual artist, he forms artworks that expose the shades of the earth. His art is connected with nature as if bridging the separation of these two factors that define each other.
“NTT” is on view from August 16 until September 15, 2016 at FDCP Cinematheque Iloilo Gallery, from 10:00 am – 6:00 pm.