A Filipino Painter’s Perspective of Filipino Identity: What Makes Philippine Contemporary Paintings Truly Filipino


  • Hyreizl Love Tangonan Adventist University of The Philippines
  • John Merick Eupalao Adventist University of The Philippines
  • Charlton Selda Adventist University of The Philippines



Filipino identity, Philippine paintings, contemporary paintings


There has been literature examining artists and their paintings in Philippine art
history. However, understanding Filipino identity in the field of contemporary
paintings from contemporary Filipino artists has not been researched extensively
yet. The study, anchored on the psychoanalytic theory, answered the research
question, “What makes Philippine contemporary paintings truly Filipino?”
Qualitative case study design was used to gain understanding of this concept from
a Filipino painter in the field of Philippine contemporary visual arts. To accomplish
this, data were gathered using in-depth interviews with a Filipino painter who has
been active in contemporary art production, and currently involved in art
organizations and in the academe. According to the analysis of the interviews, the
visual character (alibata) incorporated in the artwork, is an essential identifying
element in Philippine contemporary paintings. Another element is the subject
depicting current events in the country. The experiences, influences, and exposure
of the artists are contributing factors in the creative process behind the paintings of
the Filipino artist. This study will contribute to future research regarding the
experiences of contemporary artists in the Philippines, as well as a source of
reference for teachers of Philippine art history, with the intention of cultivating a
love for national heritage, developing the eye to critique and understand Philippine
paintings, and creating a deeper appreciation for being Filipino. Future research can
focus on exploring other visual art disciplines and mediums such as sculpture,
literary works and folk art, in relation to Filipino identity.

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How to Cite

Tangonan, H. L., Eupalao, J. M., & Selda, C. (2018). A Filipino Painter’s Perspective of Filipino Identity: What Makes Philippine Contemporary Paintings Truly Filipino. Abstract Proceedings International Scholars Conference, 6(1), 250. https://doi.org/10.35974/isc.v6i1.1175