Johanna Helmuth continues to confront the darker side of human relationships by visualizing desolate scenes reflecting social ills and the toll it takes on individuals. In this exhibition, she plays around with the concept of alternative endings by pairing the same scenarios but with different outcomes. She paints pictures that portray disregard for values, disrespect, abuse of power, apathy, and the prevalence of hatred in today’s society, to name a few. The contrasting versions of the same story may be thought of as another side of the coin, another twist in the plot. Leading to different conclusions, this set of images forms the Lie of the Land, a phrase describing the current state of things or referring to a present condition. As bleak as they may appear, these scenes define a current state of affairs, a status quo to be challenged and improved.
The artist took up advertising from the Technological University of the Philippines. Her paintings in muted colors but executed in vigorous brushstrokes often serve as a moral compass through which we can assess our own actions and attitudes. This is her third solo show following last year’s Disfigure and Women Aren’t Toys.
Curated by Ruel Caasi