What is the importance of integrating biophilia in architecture? BluPrint’s Second Volume for 2023: Creating Connections showcases how biophilic design can improve the living situation of its residents by creating a space that is a playground for natural elements. As the world continues to recover from the pandemic, reuniting people with nature became one of the remedies against isolation-induced stress.
Piercing through dark clouds and kissing vigorous waves is a ray of light shining over the seas. The faint, yet powerful beam comes from a towering structure — a lighthouse that beautifully stays resilient despite storms.
He takes inspiration from the adage, “A smooth sea never makes a skilled sailor”, while dispelling the impression that “Only treacherous currents are all that hone a mariner”. The only truth that remains timeless is that in any weather, a lighthouse stands tall as a beacon of hope, shining as a guide for all. Going beyond the oceans, each stroke sends a message that one can navigate through the darkness by following the light.
Montegrande first broke into the scene a decade ago, bringing a poetic trifecta of seascapes, landscapes, and cloudscapes to life. Today, he incorporates the art of a lighthouse into his body of work — a first in his poignant showcase. This marks another chapter in his journey as a faith-based artist. “When we find ourselves hopeless in dark and difficult situations, we must be reminded that God is always there, calling unto us to find and follow His light,” he says. Having his fair share of difficulties, Montegrande intimately understands what it means to overcome challenges with the power of faith.
Exhibited in 23 different abstract interpretations, the one-man show titled Guiding Light is curated by renowned visual artist Kenneth Montegrande, at the Provenance Art Gallery in Shangri-La The Fort, Bonifacio Global City.
The Artistic Journey
Wrapping 10 years of abstract expressionism, Montegrande cements his first decade as a full-time artist. His journey harks back to a simple desk job in journalism, including stints in PR strategy and event planning. Not long after, he discovered his gifted touch in painting. Stroke after stroke, his bold, gestural signature proved to be reminiscent of artistic greats. Montegrande’s innate creativity swiftly garnered attention, securing him features in numerous prestigious art exhibitions. His daring and instinctive style calls to mind the likes of Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning, while his mastery of light and technique draws comparisons to MW Turner, Claude Monet, and Rembrandt.
In no time, Montegrande achieved greater heights than even imagined. He became the youngest artist whose work forms part of the Malacañan Palace collection. His two large-scale acrylic masterworks, Transfigurings of Freshest Blue and Perla del Mar de Oriente, were welcomed in the palace last 2019. He was also featured as a guest artist in museums like Fundacion Sanso, sharing the stage with the distinguished Presidential Medal of Merit recipient, Juvenal Sanso. Additionally, the De La Salle University Publishing House featured him in the inaugural volume of Contemporary Filipino Artists, authored by Prof. David Jonathan Bayot, Ph.D.
Expanding his horizons, Montegrande also positioned himself as a rising international artist. He holds the distinction of being the first Filipino and Southeast Asian artist whose works are housed in the renowned collection of the Contemporary Arts Foundation, founded and directed by Japanese billionaire and mega-art collector Yusaku Maezawa. In this prestigious showcase, Montegrande’s pieces are housed with world record-breaking Basquiat works and select pieces from giants such as Picasso, Christopher Wool, Jeff Koons, Bruce Nauman, and Alexander Calder. Just last year, Montegrande took center stage in another first, an international exhibition at the Philippine Center in New York
The next few months will have Montegrande hit the globe once more. He is set for another one-man showcase in Hong Kong as he launches his highly-anticipated “moon series”. There is also a solo exhibit scheduled in Italy, as he is eager to explore his European heritage. In the local scene, Montegrande has major art fair participations lined up including ManilART in October, the ManilaBang Show in December, the Xavier Art Fest in January 2024, and the Art Fair Philippines in February.
Montegrande has unquestionably emerged as one of the most sought-after local artists, cherished by some of the world’s most esteemed patrons. If life is likened to a canvas, Montegrande’s is painted with remarkable success and infused with unwavering faith. In all his masterpieces, one thing constantly prevails — each is bathed with a guiding light that never fails to dim.
See the Guiding Light up close at the Provenance Art Gallery in Shangri-La The Fort, Bonifacio Global City. Learn more about Kenneth Montegrande on Facebook and Instagram.