In celebration of this year’s National Arts Month, I’ll feature an artist from the Philippines who is currently exhibiting his work at the D.L. Umali Basement in the University of the Philippines Los Baños. His name is Glenn Cagandahan, a multi-awarded sculptor.
His exhibit is called Transcrucifix. It’s a mixed media assemblage installation exhibit. According to the exhibit description, the sculptures represent Cagandahan’s “latest learnings about life, faith, and his relationship with God.”
For Cagandahan, Transcrucifix means “…through Jesus’ death on the cross, there comes TRANSformation; there is TRANSlation from death to life and Jesus’ death on the cross becomes a means to TRANSport us from dark to light.”
“…through Jesus’ death on the cross, there comes TRANSformation; there is TRANSlation from death to life and Jesus’ death on the cross becomes a means to TRANSport us from dark to light.”
My classmates and I went to the exhibit because we were told that we are gonna have our class there in Humanities 2 (Art, Man and Society). Although the visit was for a class, I’ve been looking forward to this. I’ve heard a lot of exhibits being showcased in the university, but I didn’t have the time to view the works.
When I entered the hall, majority of the sculptures show the image of Jesus Christ on the cross. But the crosses feature a robotic appearance. It kind of resembles the robots in the movie Transformers.
I also noticed sculptures depicting other heroes. Those were The Angel of God, Andres Bonifacio, and Super Pac (a Manny Pacquiao sculpture in a superman costume). Cagandahan’s works in the exhibit have an element of metal. According to the exhibit description, those metallic backgrounds represent materialism.
I am no artist nor an expert in explaining what art is (but then again, is there really a correct way to define art?). But one can see the tiny details which were meticulously designed. It really looked like the artist exhausted time and effort to finish the work. Just look at the details!
This one’s my favorite off the exhibit. It’s called Tree of Death. The description says that it resembles man’s death when Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit. Death here means spiritual death because of disobedience to God. The lifeless tree describes an unproductive life.
As he is also a pastor to a Christian church, Glenn does not promote idolatry in his sculptures. His works are not meant to be worshipped.
Glenn Cagandahan is a graduate from the University of the Philippines Diliman where he majored in Sculpture. One of his masterpieces is his sculpture entitled “Best Friends” which was successfully sold in an auction in Borobudur Auction House in Jakarta, Indonesia.
Cagandahan’s Transcrucifix exhibit will be displayed from February 7 to 28.
All photos are mine otherwise stated.