Sunday, November 15, 2015

Maybe it takes a near-death experience to feel alive.” — Frank Ocean

There are very few artists who can reach the success achieved by painter Dominic Rubio. Famed for paintings of “long-necked” figures in colonial 19th and early 20th century garb, Rubio and his works have become popular with both critics and collectors around the world. Last year, however, his career became sidetracked by a massive heart attack which not only endangered his physical ability to paint, but also had him question the very essence of his art.

Although the recovery has been long and arduous, thankfully, Rubio not only survived, but is now filled with a new perspective on life. Painting became a source of relief for him — a way to refresh and reflect the sense of joy and gratitude of being given a second chance. New works done amid the recovery process have a brighter character to them, and are remarkably more optimistic. They capture a bold sense of discovery and wonder, with some works even having abstract elements. But they remain distinctly works by Dominic Rubio, who is an artist acutely aware of his identity and unique approach to art.

“New Dawn” is the result of Rubio’s newfound zest for life. It is an exhibit of thanksgiving, but also an exhibit that charts out the artists trajectory into a new phase in his artistic development.

Dominic Rubio’s practice uses nostalgia in the treatment of the subjects and the colonial contexts he places them in. Rubio’s consideration of the theme is in the tinges he brings in his details. A brilliant character painter, his subjects are of a historical leaning and therefore wear the details of their historical time-period — costumes, equipment, and even the backgrounds of churches and other colonial buildings all conform to an idyllic re-imagining of the past.

A graduate of the Fine Arts program of the University of Santo Tomas, Rubio has participated in several exhibitions in and around the region, including shows in New York, Hong Kong and Singapore. Critically and commercially renowned, Rubio is sought-after artist and a regular feature of both local and international auction houses.

Dominic Rubio’s “New Dawn” will open on December 3, 2015, Thursday, 6:00 pm., Main Gallery, Galerie Joaquin.

Exhibit will run until December 17, 2015.

Galerie Joaquin is located at 371 P. Guevarra St., San Juan.

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