Catch Carousel at the Olive Creek Gallery until November 9

Jomike Tejido’s acrylic paintings on banig capture a sense of childlike wonder.

( While contemporary art might often have dark undertones, Jomike Tejido’s Carousel paintings are as wholesome as it gets. Choosing the carnival as his subject, Tejido eschews the freak shows in favor of the kiddie rides. He captures the delight of children as they ride the carousel or pilot an airplane. Tejido introduces variation on the carnival theme by painting vendors selling popcorn and cotton candy, and by presenting aerial views of the carnival.


Tejido’s paintings are akin to children’s books illustrations-it comes as no surprise to find that he is a prolific author and illustrator of children’s books, with 60 books to his name. Painted in bright candy colors, the children are all smiles. Tejido’s portraits of children have a nostalgic quality about it, though they are a little conventional.

The aerial views are Tejido’s strongest works. He uses a muted palette of pastels, golds, reds and greens to create aerial landscapes. His architectural background serves him well as he fills every inch of the canvas with basic shapes that represent tents, trees, carnival rides, and booths.

The artist also demonstrates a keen grasp of color theory as he chooses colors that complement each other. The details-striped tents, whimsical trees, saddle designs on wooden horses, ornamental patterns on the vendors’ carts-make the paintings pop.

According to the notes of the exhibit, Tejido uses banig (handwoven mat) as a canvas to give his works a "distinct Filipino character." The process of preparing the banig entails many steps, from chemically treating the banig to priming, layering with multiple coatings of acrylic, and adding a finishing glaze for protection. The banig adds texture to the pieces, but time will tell if it is durable enough to work as a canvas.



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The exhibit runs until November 9, 2013. Olive Creek Gallery is at G/F HRC Center, 104 Rada St., Legaspi Village, Makati City. Call 576-4302 for details.

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