Current Exhibition: SinEaster  

by Olan Ventura
12 April to 11 June 2017

Lent is a time when Filipino Catholic tradition manifests itself in so many cultural expressions.

One of these is the reenactment of the Passion of Christ by penitents who self-flagellate and allow themselves to be crucified as a fulfillment of a vow. Such practice often evokes an atmosphere of sorrow and violence: the faithful inflicting wounds on the flesh, bathed in sweat and blood under the scorching summer heat, and voluntarily submit to pain and physical suffering. Inspired by this annual event in his hometown of Malabon and Navotas, Olan Ventura gathers old photographs he took to document the spectacle and appropriates them for his solo exhibition SinEaster at the BenCab Museum.

Featuring new works on canvas, SinEaster combines the words “sin” and “Easter” as direct references to the beliefs and practices surrounding the Catholic observance of the Holy Week.

At the same time, it works as a pun suggesting hidden evil, harm, or danger, expressed in the rendering of the works as film negatives which obscure the macabre imagery that the practice is known for. Through such intervention, Ventura highlights the performance of faith and offers a timely reflection on the true meaning of repentance and sacrifice. The exhibition is curated by Ruel Caasi.

Rolando Ventura studied Fine Arts at the University of the East and has gained recognition from major painting competitions where he received various awards. He has exhibited in numerous group and solo shows in the Philippines and abroad.