B. Philippines, 1917 – 1994
Signed and dated on lower centre
Oil on wood
65 x 50 cm
Provenance Private Collection, Singapore
RM 30,000 – RM 50,000
The piece entitled Nude, is an illustration of the artist’s desire to break away from the norm and appropriate new modes of expression into his paintings. Commonly associated with the neorealist, Legaspi’s paintings were largely inspired by urban landscapes, and the daily lives of laymen.
During the 1970’s and 1980’s, Legaspi grew a certain fascination for the human torso that when melded together with his unique grasp of colour tones, curious transparent and solid shapes, made up stunning compositions. The artist worked at a time when his contemporaries were interested in manipulating the human form instead of merely representing it. Legaspi, on the other hand, was exposed to his friend’s reports from Europe with theories on Cubism, and to painters such as Cezanne, Van Gogh, and later Picasso.
What’s rather interesting is that Legaspi was known to be colour blind and upon discovering his impediment, Ocampo created a colour chart for him which allowed Legaspi to select colours from a pre-determined palette. This process led the artist to forge an interesting relationship with colour, where his application of paint depended almost strictly on colour theory, instead of a visual momentum. This also means that Legaspi’s paintings present distinctive hues, also evident in Nude, 1978.