WORDS, colors, and chords harmonize for an evening of creative expression and artistic fellowship.

For the third installment of “Brushes with Words and Chords,” the UST Center for Creative Writing and Studies (CCWS) gathered three musicians, six poets, and 11 visual artists from UST at the UST Museum of Arts and Sciences last Feb. 24.

“This multi-disciplinary activity invokes the creative expression of literature, music, and visual arts,” CCWS junior associate and poet Manolito Sulit told the Varsitarian. “Also, this activity wishes to promote camaraderie among Thomasian artists, musicians, and writers.”

Artworks by faculty and artists from the College of Fine Arts and Design (CFAD) were given poetic interpretations by CCWS writers. The literary pieces were read by UST Graduate School Professor Florentino Hornedo, Manila Times School of Journalism Dean Benjamin Defensor, UST Haiku group member Jack Wigley, Fides Carlos, executive secretary to the Office of the Rector, and CCWS member Tots Aguila.

Music was provided by faculty and talents from the Conservatory of Music. Voice professor and noted soprano Thea Perez rendered a musical prelude. She was accompanied by pianist and professor Peter Porticos. Tenor Randy Gilongo also rendered a number.

“This time, it was more of a challenge to the writers since we needed to translate the message that the artists wanted to convey in their works,” Sulit said. “Although that is the idea, we still added our own take on what we deduced from their works and integrated them in our own pieces.”

Sulit’s poem, “Tapat,” interpreted the painting of Thomasian physician and artist Dr. Dante Lerma titled “More than Words.” Lerma’s painting portrays a single, perfect rose while the stanza written by Sulit tells of a lover’s undying devotion to his loved one, promising both flowers and his presence even if the garden fails to produce them.

Dealing with misdeals

Sulit also wrote the poetic interpretation to “Metamorphosis” a digital artwork by Dopy Doplon. The digital painting features a young girl with wings of autumn leaves. While grasping a palm leaf in her hands, she is half-submerged in the water and the water shows a reflection of the girl minus her ripple-obscured wings. In Sulit’s poem, “Sapantaha,” two personas argue about the meaning of the artwork, their arguments canceling each other out. Sulit’s free-verse poem “Kumot,” interpreted Danilo Santiago’s “Blanket of Concern.”

CCWS director Ophelia Dimalanta’s piece, “Flight,” was paired up with CFAD Dean Jaime Delos Santos’ “Moth 2 and 3.” The poem talks about the fleeting freedom to “zoom in and gird for flight,” which, in Delos Santos’ work, is depicted in two cardinal moths, whose vast, vibrant wings suggest the innate freedom drawn from nature. Dimalanta’s “Anxiety,” which was also recited during the program, interpreted Lerma’s charcoal painting, “They Do Not Sow or Reap…They Neither Toil nor Spin.”

Surrealism characterizes the works of Lerma and the writings of poet Ramil Gulle. Lerma showed he is a die-hard surrealism aficionado with “Dali, Salvador de los Artes.” As its poetic complement, Gulle wrote “Last Supper with Mr. Dali,” which told of the last days of the Spanish surrealist painter.

“I was really surprised with the genius of Mr. Gulle after coming up with an interpretative poem for my painting despite I having no clear direction in completing the artwork,” Lerma said.

Gulle also put into words the message of Wesley Valenzuela’s “Starstruck,” an acrylic-on-canvas work.

Former Varsitarian associate editor Carlomar Daoana contributed three literary pieces for three exquisite visual showcases. For Rhoda Recto’s “Obliquity,” which presents a spread of light pastel color-soaked leather mounted on a piece of canvas, Daoana wrote “Flap,” which could be read through the revealing fold of the fabric of Recto’s artwork. Daoana also wrote “Enveloping the Sky,” for CFAD professor Mark Ramsel Salvatus’ installation, “Bring them Closer,” and “Clasp,” for Bong Ducat’s sculpture, “Three Ladies.”


Also takimg part in the interactive show were poets Cirilo Bautista, and Carlos Luz, and artists Fernando Torres and Mailah Baldemor-Balde.

“The fact that this event is multi-disciplinary and has already continued for three years in a row shows a lot of good signs concerning the allegiance of three of the most artistic sectors in UST,” Sulit said. Andrew Isiah P. Bonifacio


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