Ginny Guanco’s figures for her painting exhibit at the Galerie Y in SM Megamall are what can be described as a Bohemian’s rhapsody. The art show, which features all-female subjects, opened on September 15. Of the 32 colorful paintings of women, 26 of these are clad in classic boho chic designs in a bow to the artist’s roots as a full-bloomed flower child in the 70s.
Even in her growing up years, Ginny’s inclination to art was already very evident. In school, she participated in art contests. It was no surprise that after graduating high school from the College of the Holy Spirit in Mendiola, Fine Arts was the course she chose at the University of Sto. Tomas. As an artist immersed in her era, she believed in the message of peace, love, joy, and happiness against a backdrop of rock music and hippie art. “I was also really into bohemian fashion then as much as I am now. I did not outgrow my fashion taste, because I feel that it fits my personality and represents who I really am.”
Her 26 muses are clad in similar fashion, in flowy and flowery creations and are labeled, alphabetically, after hippie names that derive inspiration from the elements. Among the collection, exhibit guests would meet Aura, Freedom, Lilac, Seagull, Meadow, and Ocean, all hand-drawn in acrylic, in a style which Ginny describes as a fusion of fashion and art illustration. This effect is a direct result of her training as an artist both in the UST and in the Corcoran School of Art in Washington D.C., along with fashion illustration lessons from no less than the doyenne of Slim’s Fashion and Arts School, the late Salvacion “Slim” Lim Higgins. “I would describe my drawings as a mix of the two drawing disciplines where one features elongated figures for fashion and the other shows a more sinewy effect as in the fine arts,” she describes.
Paintings number 27 to 32 is her homage to the strong women in the comicverse, featuring pop culture heroines from Marvel and DC franchises – Black Widow, Elektra, and the two main incarnations of Wonder Woman. “I have always been attracted to strong female characters, as I was also very much into women’s rights in the 70s. I have always believed that women should be empowered, that regardless whether you are a career woman, a CEO, a homemaker, you should know how you are as a person, knowing your worth, a human being to be respected and not looked down upon. And one who is secure in who she is.”
The solo exhibit took a long time in coming, as Ginny took a 15-year hiatus from painting, pursuing a career, first in the media, and later on as a public relations professional. It took the passing of her favorite ginger cat, Simba and a few art materials lying around to get her back to art. A post of her finished figure on social media garnered a lot of interest from friends to convince her to take up the brush again. A chance meeting with Galerie Y owner Rollie Yusi, who viewed her works with interest, set the painting exhibit in motion. Ginny’s boho-inspired pieces join the gallery’s carefully-curated works by established and emerging Filipino artists as it works toward the enrichment of contemporary Philippine art.
Ginny Guanco’s Boho Chic painting exhibit will be on view at Galerie Y from September 15 to 24. Opening cocktails are provided by; Chef Jojo Javier’s SWEETIELICIOUS, Chef Greggie Mercado of AGING’S FOOD DELIGHT, WINE DEPOT, NESTEA AND KITKAT Strategic Works, Inc. and Ginny Guanco. The gallery is located at the 4th floor of the SM Megamall, Bldg A. For more information, contact Galerie Y, open from Mondays to Sundays, 10 AM – 10 PM, or call 634- 2704. Visit also the artist’s website, artbyginny.net or FB page Art by Ginny.