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The New Middle Class and the Remaking of our SoHo, Our Spray-Painted Little Section of the City and other fictions

  • Start

    07 March 2019
  • End

    28 April 2019
  • Artist

    Jojo Soria de Veyra
  • Gallery

    3F, The Picasso Boutique Serviced Residences, 119 LP Leviste St., Salcedo village, Makati City, 1227, Philippines

I don’t believe in solo shows with themes. I believe in individual works’ ability to stand on their own merits, not reliant on a family of works’ theme or manifesto. That is to say, to be able to function independent of their fellows within a show,  even independent of their creator’s reputation, if that is possible. After all, wherever it is they’ll move to next, it won’t be with their fellows, at least physically speaking. So we might as well call this show “Veyra”, to simply say that it’s a show of different paintings by Veyra. Thank God I’m not feeding everybody a show title like “Odes to Serenity” or “In Defiance of Things Real”.

So, I hope we’re clear on why we’re calling this simply “The New Middle Class and the Remaking of Our SoHo, Our Spray-Painted Little Section of the City and other stories”. That title simply says there’s a piece here with that title, and it’s a story, a narrative painting, akin to a ballad perhaps, and that there are other “stories” in this show, and also that these other pieces are also stories! Let that be the sole intended connecting factor, then, that these are all stories. But that title doesn’t say that the pieces here all treat of the problem of, say, air pollution. No, a painting cannot be a mere element in a show; it must be its own composition or concept, its own complete narrative, its own movie.

So, maybe that’s what I am, a believer in concepts. Not concepts for a solo show but concepts for a painting. Again, I think each painting should be a show in itself.

I also don’t believe in “styles” as a product of one’s choosing from among many styles to choose from in a department store. Style should be a product of a natural flair or impulse or a sort of pulse, otherwise a product of a notion, an intellectual approach, a philosophy, or a product of a rebellion, in the same way that the Impressionists’ Impressionism were products of a rebellion against old views concerning light, reality, subjects, duration of production, and so on. The same can be said of Cubism’s approach to a bottle’s reality, or fake wholeness. These two aforementioned “styles” weren’t just styles, these were arguments. Marcel Duchamp offered various arguments. That’s probably why he also kicked the idea of having one unifiying style out the door.

So, now it’s settled. My show is not a show displaying either a common theme or a common style. If there’s a common theme or style that one might glean from above and that could act as a seam between the nine works here, by all means. But I here testify that I didn’t intend that connecting overall theme or style. What I did was I painted movies, as I said, all of which narratives instructed me how to go about telling them. I wasn’t going to go like, “I painted my first painting about war in black and white, so my next painting will also be in black and white, because that can be my signature which would then facilitate the marketing of me.” Oh my God. :)


-Jojo Soria de Veyra