Like me, you probably need to sit down, and take a few minutes to make meaning out of this exhibition title by Lyle Buencamino. In possible logic, 'expires' here draws forth an idea of rebirth, not a 'use by' date or total death. Meanwhile, 'exhuming primary artistic assumptions' implies an unending questioning of concept, context and content, which is the rightful compass of every artist. And at the human age of 40, where change around you begins to appear unstoppable and affective, your own mental and corporeal foundations need to finally find solid ground - lest you evaporate into the atmosphere along with hypothetical theories. The paintings and installations in this solo exhibition, his first in six years, bring us back and forth, revisiting old and new ideas of artworks executed as far back as 2006.
Residing and working in Singapore for the past six years, Lyle Buencamino is both ubiquitous and yet one of the most elusive artists you have never met in the landscape of Singapore visual arts. One year after graduating from the University of the Philippines in 2005, the artist mounted his first and what is to become a personally pivotal solo exhibition titled A Bowtie For John Lyle. Titled after a music piece, composed by his father for the end credits of a Filipino horror movie, this exhibition excavated a father-son relationship that leaned more towards a master-disciple rapport. A year later, Lyle became a recipient of the prestigious Ateneo Art Award. Along with the prize was the opportunity to embark on a one-month residency at La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia and a solo exhibition back home in Manila thereafter. The award and warm acceptance of his oeuvre by both collectors and the art public transpired somewhat as an 'unquiet shock' and has become the philosophical fodder in the continuation of his artistic processes.
Lyle Buencamino (b. 1978) graduated with a Bachelor in Fine Arts majoring in Painting. He is known for his large-scale paintings based on movie stills produced by the now-defunct LVN Productions in the 1950's - what is often referred to as the 'Golden Age' in Filipino cinema. His series, No Fighting in the Museum, began as a reflection on propriety and behaviour in institutions and other similar public spaces. Lyle has held three solo exhibitions thus far, namely Death of the Last Romantic at Finale Art File (2013); All The Symptoms But Not The Disease at Ateneo Art Gallery (2008) and A Bowtie for John Lyle at Mag:net Gallery (2006). Selected exhibitions include Mutable Truths: Perspectives in Philippine Contemporary Art Practices at the Ateneo Art Gallery in Manila (2017); What does it all matter, as long as the wounds fit the arrows? at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (2014) and No talking points 2 at TAKSU Gallery in Singapore (2013).
To accompany the exhibition, a special talk has been organized with the artist Lyle Buencamino, curator Khai Hori and collector Lourdes Abela Samson.
Lourdes Abela Samson has been collecting contemporary Southeast Asian Art for many years. Her interest in this field led her to pursue a post-graduate degree in Asian Art History at LASALLE College of the Arts in Singapore. She graduated in 2018.