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Carlo Tanseco
May 6 - May 15, 2021


    “I love pattern, order, and symmetry. This exhibit is all about depicting order and then breaking that order, so that a new figure or realm emerges and opposes it. It is about uniformity and consistency yielding to something that is free, defiant, and unique. It is about ideas that challenge the system.” – Carlo Tanseco     


   Carlo Tanseco is well-known in design circles as a maverick – a product and furniture designer frequently featured in CITEM, an architecture graduate, an entrepreneur connected with various businesses.  But he kept a secret passion that took him years to have the time and opportunity for.  This first solo painting exhibition by Carlo Tanseco explores pattern and order on the one hand, and liberation from patterns, and by extension, the prevailing social order or the limits we impose on ourselves, on the other.  This is his first painting exhibition; something that he took years to transition in to this medium, is his personal expression of breaking free from his usual forms of expression and creativity to pursue this passion which started since childhood.     

   Four series, all about the iconic, comprise the exhibition; showing not just the depth, but also the range of the artist in his debut.  Tanseco’s take on classical mythology – the Minotaur and the labyrinth, Pandora and the box, the fall of Icarus, among others, all take on a graphic quality that not only look pleasing to the eye in their symmetry, but also wittily integrate patterns as part of the narrative.   

   The second series is about Jose Rizal, and sections of his poem Mi Ultimo Adios, integrates the musings of the artist on our society and history, in the light of our national hero’s literary farewell.  Integrating Rizal’s ophthalmology as metaphor for his insights, Tanseco expresses criticality on real patriotism.     


   The third series are on two of his artistic heroes, whose works and visage are iconic.  Vignettes from the life of Salvador Dali and Yayoi Kusama are integrated into the works, which utilize visual forms that the artists have used.     


   The last, a lone portrait, from which the exhibition all started from, shows the ability of the artist to express in his style, the characteristics of a person.     


   All these series by Tanseco are visually tied together by a graphic rendition of pattern and symmetry. Knowledgeable and witty, the images he produces show the hallmarks of an artist confident and in an advanced state of development.  Conceptually, they are all of idealizations – myth, nation, hero, icon – which presage the trajectory of this artist, whose initial foray shows a mark of matured visual identity, ripe for a full artistic career in the visual arts.


Building a collection that started out as an idea of being stuck at home and having enough time to create, Carlo S.  Tanseco’s Juxtaposed Between Order & Complexity collection brought itself to life when the Covid-19 cases started rising and lockdowns from left to right were implemented.


The main concept of the collection was to break patterns, violate order, and disrupt symmetry in each piece. Showcased in Art Cube Gallery from May 6-22, 2021.

Irony, contrast, and duality are the main drivers of Tanseco’s inspiration. He shares that the concept has been brewing in his mind for almost a decade and that the events that unfolded in the last year has helped his concept take shape. Creating art at a very challenging time has permitted him to discover new inspiration and material.


“A pandemic heightened my sense of mortality, and that is very liberating.” The artist confesses.


 Tanseco shares that his vision for now has only gone as far as his next collection but he shares that he is driven, excited, and motivated despite the country’s current situation and hopes that this is true for all of art in general.

For Tanseco, art is like a vaccine. One needs a vaccine to protect their physical health while art is something that can be used for the healing of one’s mental health.


Tanseco desires for his audience to embark on a journey each time they view his works. He is fascinated with how each person has a different perspective and that this applies to how they hear, see, and share stories.


“The pandemic made this duality more evident. I am so amused at how each one's reality can be as different as night and day. It’s nothing new, but I guess in this Age of Information, it is more pronounced—fake news versus real news.  So, right now, this is how I see the subject and the narrative, but it is presented in such a way that it encourages interpretation from the audience.” Tanseco shares as the interview closes.



Written by Alecs Ronquillo

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