The Garden of Earthly Delights: An Art Exhibit Inspired by The Forests from The Czech Republic
An exhibit featuring the collaborative works of contemporary artists Lilianna Manahan, Gabriel Lichauco, Stanley Ruiz and Jiri Pacinek is running from 16 March – 27 March, 2019 from 11AM to 8PM at the Aphro store in The Alley at Karrivin Plaza in Makati City.
Stephanie Frondoso, curator of The Garden of Earthly Delights exhibit, shared her experience when she and the team of contemporary artists from the Philippines traveled to the glass making region of the Czech Republic a couple of years ago. She recalls how the team traveled two hours outside of Prague in order to reach the countryside and visited the lovely towns of Novy Bor, Lindava and Kunratice.
Some of the glass-blown art objects included in the exhibit.
Their team was impressed with the dedication of the glass artisans to work, starting as early as 6AM and working until 4PM. Once work ends, the glass artisans under the team of Jiri Pacinek, took them to the surrounding forests.
“When we went to the Czech Republic, the glass blowing workshops were set amidst wild gardens and the glass makers decorated the studio gardens with large pieces of glass prototypes. They also created sculptures of a glass tree and glass plants. When the work ends at 4PM, the glass makers took us to the surrounding forests for mushroom-hunting and mushroom-picking. They showed us how to find mushrooms and pointed out which ones were edible and poisonous. Some of the mushrooms were very large: over 6 inches tall. We were also amazed by the soft forest floor. Their forests resemble pictures from fairytale books and is very different from our tropical rainforest jungles in the Philippines,” says Stephanie.
"Day 6," the glass blown artwork by Lilianna Manahan and Jiri Pacinek, was inspired by the biblical Genesis story and celebrates the entrance of man and woman into the world.
This glass blown artwork with oak wood by Stanley Ruiz and Jiri Pacinek is called “Interpolate 1” and resembles bubbles that landed and have not yet popped.
"Bublinka" by Gabriel Lichauco and Jiri Pacinek was created using a solid piece of glass pierced through a hollow glass bubble.
Drawing inspiration from their wonderful experience in the forests of the Czech Republic, Stephanie transformed the Aphro store into a modern style, forest-inspired, art space.
With 50 collaborative glassworks in different shapes, sizes, and colors, she used her imagination and creativity in curating the exhibit.
For The Garden of Earthly Delights, Stephanie used a long picnic table to hold small colorful glass vessels decorated with air plants––unusual-looking flora and sturdy flowers that she found in the market. She opted to use the “accessory plants,” which are not commonly used by florists when making flower arrangements, as she found these more interesting, making the plants look more unusual, while also matching the unique glass objects.
Stephanie also shared how she maximized the use of the multi-level design layout of the space when she was curating the glass objects.
“I imagined the giant staircase layout of Aphro to be a mountainside, where our glass animals would be roaming and grazing, amidst our glass objects that resemble abstract plants, clouds, smoke, mushrooms and other natural objects. The overall setting is meant to resemble a giant diorama of a pastoral scene. Although the featured artists had different concepts, their works seemed to belong to the same species or family. I was happy to see that it worked out because the plants were a great contrast to the hardness and brilliance of the glass and is a reminder that nature has served an inspiration to humans from the beginning of time,” says Stephanie.
The Garden of Earthly Delights runs until March 27th at the Aphro store located at The Alley in Karrivin Plaza (2316 Chino Roces Ave. Ext., Makati City). Store hours are from 11AM to 8PM.
Photos courtesy of Stephanie Frondoso