I recently made contact with Lorenzo E. Gabutina (pseudonym: Legabutina), a digital artist, based in Caloocan, Philippines for a feature article in my blog. His out-of-the-box artistic style of abstract images that is beautifully surreal and magically pleasing to the eyes. I was immediately drawn to his work.
Lorenzo E. Gabutina has more than 30 years of professional experience in advertising and marketing management. He learned and sharpened his marketing skills in a multinational company environment with a 15-year stint in Kodak Philippines, as the company’s marketing communications manager. Lorenz’s first and most passionate love is advertising where he had been a copywriter and account executive for many years before assuming senior management positions. He has been involved in all key aspects of the advertising business, from creative to media, production, research and marketing planning.
According to Legabutina, he sees teaching as the culmination of his advertising career where he could share with advertising students the many insights and learning’s he had gained from his long years of working in the ad industry. He is currently, an advertising lecturer at St. Scholastica’s College.
Legabutina is a regular artist-seller of the monthly Future Market @ Escolta an event organized by 98b in its effort to help revitalized old Manila. He was also invited at the Katipunan Weekend Market last weekend of October. They feature a tightly curated selection of jewelry, handmade items, clothes, arts & crafts, vintage finds, delicious food & live music. If you are in the Escolta area on November 14, go checkout the Future Market. There are no specific dates scheduled for the November and December Katipunan Weekend Market but from time to time, please do check their Facebook page for exact dates.
His first artist solo art show, “The Accidental Artist” was held earlier this year at the Sigwada Art Gallery in San Andres Bukid.
Take a moment to read his artist insight, and take a peek into the mind of this late bloomer.
On his art journey:
My art journey began 5 years ago when I retired from advertising work at age of 60. I didn’t know then that I could make a good art. With so much time on my hands, I started doodling on the computer and posted my works on Facebook. My friends liked it! And that is what started this art journey…..I’m a late bloomer.
Early this year my eyes got so bad that I had an operation. “Wala akong makita sa computer,” I could not see the computer screen. So I started making hand drawn sketches. “Aba, pwede pala akong mag drawing with my hands!” (He said: Wow, I could draw with my hands). When I started posting them on Facebook, my friends liked it. It was a big revelation for me, to learn that I could really draw with my hands. I have always been used to doing things through the computer. I had my eye operation last April this year and my eyes now are as good as brand new. But I continue to sketch with my hands till today, aside from my digital work.
On his art:
There is nothing profound or philosophical about my art. At least, that’s what I think so. Others will disagree, of course. The thing is, the narrative in my art comes after the work is finished, not before – which art critics will scoff at. There has to be a clear intent or purpose behind what you do, they will say.
My focus is on design, not the story. I want my art to be visually provocative, nothing more. If it touches your five senses and if it resonates with you; then, I am happy. I don’t want my art to be ‘understood’ nor ‘rationalized.’ It’s the least of my intentions. The purpose of my art is to entertain. “Mababaw ba?” (Am I shallow?)
On his art style and influences:
Artists that have had the most impact in me are Dali, Picasso, Boticelli, Miro, Klee, O-keefe, and may others whose names I can’t remember now. I don’t know if their style has influenced my art, maybe subconsciously, yes. I am drawn towards art that have geometric, pop, grotesque, surreal elements.
My art is a mélange of styles. I sometimes wonder if I have a unique style but it’s not a big thing for me. I don’t want to be boxed into a certain style anyway. I want it spontaneous, impromptu and sincere which reflects who I am as a person. What you see is what you get, “kun baga.” (rather)
On being a self-taught artist:
Being a self-taught artist, I pretty much do what I want to do. Not bound by any norm or convention other than good basic aesthetic sense. I don’t put on my thinking that when I work. It’s purely instinctive. I just let things flow. I trust my creative instincts.
Every artist needs validation. The feeling that he is doing something right; I get a high when I fellow artist like my work. “Gawa na araw ko pag may isang mabigat na artist na nag like sa work ko,” my day is fulfilled when a big time artist admires his artworks.
The future of his art:
Where do I go from here? I will keep on marking art as long as my five senses are intact. I am happy that art came last in my checkered life. To me, it’s a gift, a blessing from God. I am not a super religious person but much of who I am today and the kind of art I make, I attribute to God. “Nag- iba ang pananaw ko sa buhay,” my life’s vision changed when I rediscovered God.
***A Selection of Legabutina’s Art Masterpieces***
(Please click image to enlarge)
Digital Collage Abstract Art
Images used with permission.