Using social realist-inspired images, Jeresano preaches against Juan Tamad …

The expressionistic figurative images of Ronald Jeresano, 29, are reminiscent of the works of social realist artists from the ’70s to the ’90s. But instead of repeating a cauldron of socio-historical images such as the dialectical presentation of the great divide between the rich and the poor, the oppressor and the oppressed, the religious colonials and the spiritual natives, the colonials and pure ethnic tribes as preferred by the social realist artists – Jeresano’s intention is more personal than political, his images more biographical than externally acquired symbols of anger.

His art works quietly preach about aspirations and action, he says, adding they are antidote to anomie, despair, paralysis and the Juan Tamad syndrome, a folkloric symbol of laziness in the Philippines. The folk tale’s origin, traced to a book by an unknown author in 1919, was initially popularized by actor Manuel Conde in a 1947 movie; re-published in a book

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