Lot #034

Mark Justiniani

a.) Balik-Tanaw b.) Dalangin
a.) signed and dated 2009 (lower left) b.) signed and dated 2002 (lower right)
pen and ink on paper
a.) 14” x 10” (36 cm x 25 cm) b.) 10” x 8” (25 cm x 20 cm)
Starting Bid : Php 40,000
HP + BP : Php 140,160
Provenance Private Collection, Manila
In spare but no-less evocative strokes, Mark Justiniani depicts a figure looking through the triangle of his legs — an act that is still superstitiously done by someone wanting to see whether he is being followed by enchanted creatures. Folded by the waist, the figure may also be looking at the things that have transpired, if not history itself, through a different vantage point, giving a twist to the Filipino aphorism: “Ang hindi lumingon sa pinanggalingan, ‘di makakarating sa paroroonan.” Fingers tightly interlocked, their thumbs resting on the crest of the nose between the eyes, this figure by Mark Justiniani seems not exactly praying but plotting something. Whatever his intent, there is something overtly religious, if not entirely hypocritical about the gesture — possibly Justiniani’s commentary on false spirituality.