Sunday, December 17, 2006


The Art of Ronaldo Ruiz and His Technological Sublimation
By Danny C. Sillada

Abstract paintings pullulating with red and golden hues, black baby dolls crawling toward a television screen, and labyrinthine electronic gadgets with eerie lights sum up the “Technological Sublimation” of the award winning Filipino painter, installation and performance artist Ronaldo Ruiz.

In his particular installation “Technological Sublimation”, Ruiz came up with a concept how television and computer could distort the minds of the children and teenagers with his powerful imagery of baby black dolls watching another doll on TV monitor with iconic head and body stuck with syringes. The result is hauntingly surreal and mesmeric.

The artist never ceases exploring what technology could offer in his art, be it installation or live art performance. He manipulates and exploits technological gadgets to send across his message that technology could either build or destroy. It sounds trite and banal but Ruiz, like a shaman, had masterfully delivered his ingenuity with a powerful specter of reality in our society.

In contrast to his abstract paintings, his installations and live art performances are more dynamic and visually compelling. His paintings, on the other hand, evoke the balance of forms and colors, a conscious portrayal of yīn and yang. The subdued primary colors and refined patterning textures on canvas reflect the artist’s archetypal persona.

Surprisingly, however, the artist’s installation and performance art reveal the repressed side of his personality. His installation, for instance, discloses his inner self dashed with satirical sentiment and existential angst. The unrestrained histrionic portrayal of his three-dimensional pieces serves as a liberating device of his inner struggle as an artist of incalculable vision and eloquence.

To sum, the art of Ronaldo Ruiz invites the viewers to immerse into his own world of harmony and disorder. At times, his art can be visually appealing, evoking serenity within, but most often, his art perturbs and provokes bringing the viewers to their own reality, a reality numbed with complacency and cynicism.

© Danny C. Sillada