/ 8 May 2021

A 21-year old student of the College of Fine Arts of the University of the Philippines gained a following online for his minimalist painting that depicts the conditions of the Filipinos during the/ pandemic.

Studio Arts major Jadie Regala Pasaylo created an acrylic painting as an entry for this year’s GSIS Art Competition. Pasaylo submitted his entry last April 19 but received an email telling him that his work did not make the cut.

This prompted Pasaylo to post his painting on Facebook along with a photo of himself standing beside it.

His post has 9,800 likes, 428 comments, and 4,600 shares.

Entitled “Maluwag na Kaginhawahan,” the painting is a 4×3 feet solid grey acrylic paint on canvas with a tiny figure of a can of red sardines at the right bottom corner of the frame.

“Minimalism pinaka-the best na style para ma-depict kung gaano rin ka-minimal ang ibinibigay na ayuda ng nasa itaas,” Pasaylo explained.

He believes that an artwork should not only be visually engaging but must also tell the true stories of the people.

“Naniniwala akong hindi kailangan ng maganda lang sa mata at makukulay na pintura ang kailangang gamitin para makagawa ng isang magandang sining kundi kung gaano kalaman at kalawak ang kuwento sa likod ng isang artwork,” he said.

The art student stressed that ordinary people are the usual casualties of natural occurrences, yet most of them remain unheard.

“They are caught off guard, left jeopardized, and forsaken for God knows how long. Incentives also encounter this dismal fate. These supposed lifeboats of our drowning citizens are left unattended or brazenly misused. Our stomachs are emptied, and so our resources,” he said.

Pasaylo shared that the struggles of Filipinos are just like the red sardines in his painting.

“Katulad ng isang nanggagalit na pulang sardinas ay ganoon din kaanghang ang pakikibaka ng bawat Filipino para marinig ang boses ng mga nasa ibaba. Sabay-sabay nating paingayin ang latang ibinigay ng mga mapanlamang. Art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable,” he said.