Provenance: Private Collection, Madrid
The art of Fernando Zobel has always balanced the demands of two visual cultures, east and west yet neither dominated his art for he saw in it an opportunity to escape into the freedom of individual expression which transcended the constraints of both cultural influences.
Zobel gave Filipino artists the feeling of belonging to the international mainstream. He also taught local artists to place value on their paintings and sculpture, and not to simply give them away. This painting interprets a song in both abstract and metaphysical terms. It represents the high level of perfectionism achieved by Zobel after he had outgrown his early exuberant style.
Fernando Zobel led the way towards the modernist language, even in interpreting the time esteemed art of the still life.
Fernando Zobel introduced the color black, which traditionally had been taboo in the local scene, and later used calligraphy in painting. But his influence goes beyond visual or technical considerations, for he was responsible for shaping the thoughts and attitudes of a whole generation of Filipino painters.
Zobel's contribution to the development of modern Philippine art as patron and educator is long acknowledged, and he is considered by critics and academics to have left an indelible mark on Philippine abstraction.