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The Rover

The Rover

Regular price ₱70,000.00
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Oil on Canvas


20" x 16"



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Paete is a quiet little town in Southern Luzon, famous for wooden sculptures, hewn by sharp a instrument. Whence the name paet or chisel. The sculptures serve as molds for paper mache, producing a colorful array of various animals folk figures in native attire.
Paete is known for its rich summer harvest of an indigenous fruit, the "lanzones". Artistic talents abound in Paete, some of whose names ring loud in the registry of Philippine contemporary art.

Among those up and coming artists is Romeo Montes. Working assistant in a sculpture studio. Montes has now stretched his artistic wings. His venture into painting augurs well. On his canvases, Montes portrays images of Paete as the classic Philippine hometown: striking still lifes of the "paet"; a typical noonday meal of bangus (milkfish), ripe tomatoes and salted eggs; rich profusions of the national flower, the sampaguita. Montes's version of the Mother and Child theme is the "inay" and the "bagong silang" (newly born). In these paintings Montes simultaneously captures the joy and—realistically speakin—the weariness of maternity.

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Romeo Montes

Romeo Montes

A true artists shows unique creativity, says Paete-born painter and sculptor Romeo Montes. One look at his body of works and one begins to understand. He has developed his own artistic style through patience and discipline.

Montes earlier paintings portrait typical everyday life in sampaguita flower, the paet (chisel), roads paved with lush greenery leading to My. Makiling, the lansones fruit. Today, his works deviate from the traditional way of recording familiar subjects; he has learned to incorporate rendering familiar subjects; he has learned to incorporate elements of texture and movement. His own take, for instance, of a common koi art, is beautifully distinct. It maximizes the use of vibrant colors layered that tempts the viewer to touch the artwork. He credit the late abstractionist Florencio Conception for mentoring him and encouraging him to develop his style step by step, painting using traditional techniques, and gradually transitioning into abstract paintings. However, he is advised by Dr. Renato Cheng to apply postmodernism in his craft, and cultivate his own style of painting in order for him to develop unique identity compared to other artists. His art journey also saw his style resemble that of the late national artist Jose Joya (whom Montes greatly admires). More recently, art enthusiasts have noted that they see glimpses of BenCab, another national artist, Montes' choice of color palettes.

Montes finds the competitive art industry a challenge, with the sheer number of contemporary artists entering the scene. And though he recognizes the need for an aggressive campaign to penetrate the art market, he frowns upon the practice of art mass production. He claims that seeing his works on display in galleries is already a source of pride and joy. All in all, Montes aims to carve a legacy that will be remembered by future generations, as well as be an inspiration to other aspiring and ambitious artists.

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