In the Defiles of Abstraction

Patrick Flores


In this rereading of the history of modern art in the Philippines, Lee Aguinaldo issituated within the turns in the engagement of the field with modernity, beginningin the late twenties until the sixties and so scanning the period after the academicromanticism of Fernando Amosolo through the eclectic modernist styles of thePhilippine Art Gallery. In this scheme, the work of Aguinaldo and the manner inwhich it has been imagined in the context of modern art is revisited, with the viewof reflecting on the historiographic and critical language that has been harnessedto explain and understand “abstraction” and the implications of this explanationand understanding in the wider discussion of such terms as “neorealism,” “nonobjective,”and “internationalism.”


Philippine art history; Philippine modernism; abstract art; painting

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