Ernest Concepcion is a Filipino painter based in Brooklyn, who combines the motif of classical landscape with contemporary caricatures and representations that take one into the framework of warfare while uncovering the effects of a larger 20th-Century, Postwar existence. Concepcion began exploring this juxtaposition in a series of over 100 drawings from 2004 titled The Line Wars. Within each 9” x 12” panel the artist covered the pictorial space with cartoon-like conflicts, portraying chairs flying toward each other, monster-like eggs smothering a massive army of Saint Benedicts, or pasta fighting against the quick-sands of rice.
In 2008 Concepcion’s vision of battlefield landscapes was realized on a much larger scale at the Kentler Drawing Space where caricatures were tagged over landscapes and extended from floor to ceiling in the tall, narrow gallery space. In 2009 the artist presented a series of explosion paintings that consisted of enamel on steel. Colors became the physical layers of each mushroom cloud and marked the artist’s shift further into the depths of conflicted horizon lines, away from caricatures.
L.A. Guerra opened in July 2011, as the artist’s first West Coast solo show at Untitled Art Projects, located in Los Angeles. He frequently collaborates with Mike Estabrook in The Shining Mantis, a chalk-drawing duo that renders serendipitous battle scenes to live band music and has toured New York City, Montreal, Miami and Beijing. Concepcion has also collaborated with Queens Poet Laureate Paolo Javier on a number of chapbooks, performances and installations.
In 2011 the artist was a NYFA Fellowship finalist in the category of Printmaking/Drawing/Book Arts. Concepcion was also a nominee for the Painters and Sculptors Grant offered by the Joan Mitchell Foundation. Between February and August 2012 the artist exhibited new work in two solo shows and three group shows that appeared in galleries throughout Manila, Philippines: The Great Ghastly at Art Informel Gallery, PUSO + DAGA at the West Gallery, BEAT at the Lopez Memorial Museum, All Quiet on the Eastern Front at Blanc Gallery Manila Peninsula, and VERSUS at the Secret Flesh Gallery. Concepcion is currently participating in a group show titled WORD at the Corridor Gallery in Brooklyn, New York.