The core of the self is the soul and our faith in God takes hold of it making it whole.
Norman Vincent B. Acedera’s first solo show at the Gallery i entitled: “Marka Alima” (marked by hand) is a narrative about the self and the soul. It underscores the process of spiritual confrontation in our individual assertions for renewal as a means to attain stronger faith in God.
The self and the soul and human spirituality are among the enduring subjects in art. It has been tackled by many artists across time and discipline. Among Ilonggo artists, however, Acedera’s rendition can perhaps be considered with more confidence as he imparts his dominant character through his works – a strong believer of God.
While many artworks that deal with faith on a superior being or creator often follows the religious tradition in figurative representations which are likewise functional for ritual, Acedera’s presentation runs divergent from religious artworks. Hence, it could not be mistaken as a sacred or religious art pieces or a commissioned work from the faithful.
Its modern minimalist approach appeals to the personal and the individual, regardless of religious conviction. It can be instrumental for individual reflection on life the way they live it each day.
Although faith in God remains a conservative subject for discussion and mostly confined within religious exercises or only by the religious, Acedera’s work certainly offered an alternative technique to convey the relevance of faith in God in this fast-paced urban living and in an increasingly pluralistic yet “Godless society.”
While the messaging of his works is heavily grounded on the Christian faith, his portrayal in minimalism attempts to encompass religious distinctions.
The two sets of work: Option 1 and Option 2 in 22 x 24 inches Mixed Media series, intends as a self-reminder for the art collector to constantly check the “condition of their soul.”
For Acedera, these collections entitled “Re:verse 6:33” offers a visual representation of the words in Matthew 6:33 – the first book among the four Book of Gospels of the New Testament in the Bible.
The centerpiece, “Mathew 6:33 (Option A)” in 98 3/8 x 98 3/8 Mixed Media, prominently display Acedera’s use of stainless steel that demarcate an inner and outer layer. Stainless steel is used by Acedera as a symbolism about the self and the soul as being one – the inner layer the soul, and the outer layer the self; and held by steel as among the most durable of metals.
In its entirety, however, all of the pieces highlight the words in Matthew 6:33: “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”
The use of steel likewise serves a functional purpose to his art.
Acedera integrated the use of stainless engraved by his signature for the artworks. It is put onto each piece with the belief that it will endure the test of time considering that the canvas can worn-out through time or can be damaged or burned. Yet the artist’s signature will remain for it is engraved, not on the canvas, but on the steel.
The artist also believes that the engraved signature does not only ensure that he left a legacy in art even after he had completed his journey to life in this world, but more importantly, the message that carries the reminder of faith.
In his “Matthew 6:33 (Option B)” 50 ¼ x 98 3/8 inches Mixed Media, the use of different color to illustrate the self and soul can be observed. “The white color will eventually fade out with time,” said Acedera, “but beneath the white colored surface will emerge the gold color.”
The gold color for Acedera epitomizes the good in every human being. There is a gold side in each of us; it is within us,” said Acedera referring back that goodness can be attained when the body and soul is in harmony.
It is in these assertions that Acedera sets himself with the rest of the faithful in God; constantly believing and perpetually hopeful that human beings, especially believers of God, are bearers of good news and carriers of good deed. ###
View the work of Norman Vincent B. Acedera in “Marka Alima” at Gallery i, Unit 2B, 2/F, E. Villanueva Bldg, cor. Aldeguer and J.M. Basa Sts. Iloilo City. Exhibit runs until February 22, 2018.