Minimalist Painting Shows Reality of Most Filipinos During the Pandemic

Filipino artist’s minimalist piece titled “Maluwag na Kaginhawaan” didn’t qualify for the GSIS National Art Competition. Jadie Regala Pasyalo’s artwork is likened to Andy Warhol’s Campbell Soup Cans (1962) as it depicts a can of sardines at the corner of the canvas. It’s meant to showcase the relief goods (or lack thereof) received by citizens during the pandemic.

Ginhawa For All

GSIS announced their painting competition and posted the guidelines on their website on March 15. The competition is open for all Filipino artists aged 18 years old and above, with cash prizes amounting to P300,000 for the winning entries. All entries had to explore the theme “Alay na Ginhawa sa Panahon ng Pandemya.”

Minimalist Painting Shows Reality of Most Filipinos During the Pandemic
Photo: GSIS

Empty Stomachs, Empty Resources

Pasyalo shared details of his painting in a Facebook post with the caption, “People are the usual casualties of the natural occurrences. They are caught off guard, left jeopardized, and forsaken for God knows how long. Incentives also encounter this dismal fate. These supposed lifeboats of our drowning citizens are left unattended or brazenly misused. Our stomachs are emptied, and so are our resources.”

Photo: Jadie Regala Pasyalo

About the Painting

“Maluwag na Kaginhawaan” was submitted under the Representational and is made from acrylic. The artist shares that minimalism was the best style to use because it depicts how little the government has given during the pandemic. Pasyalo believes that art shouldn’t be merely something pleasing to the eye and colorful paint; it’s about the substance and story behind each artwork. “Sabay sabay nating paingayin ang latang binigay ng mga mapanlamang,” his Facebook post concludes.

Photo: Jadie Regala Pasyalo

The unqualified art is not for sale but Pasyalo will be making a related series. Half of the sales will be donated to fund community pantries. Netizens suspect the reason the fine art student’s work didn’t make the cut is due to how hard-hitting the truth was.


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