With a stellar career in the arts spanning seven decades, Juvenal Sansó has meritoriously earned three medals of distinction from the three countries he has resided in over the years. These include the King’s Cross of Isabella from the King of Spain, the order of Chevalier from the French Government and the Presidential Medal of Merit given by the Republic of the Philippines. An artist of great import, museums and private collectors in the Philippines, the United States, and France have collected his works. A substantial body of his works are exhibited at Fundacion Sanso, which runs a museum and an archive in San Juan City, Philippines.

Sanso is a master colorist. He can wield colors to compose the mood or ambiance for his specific artworks, making them tranquil, contemplative, exuberant, somber, or even morose and tragic. He can use color or even the absence of it for his own purposes. His black and white artworks for instance are major masterpieces in their own right.

In Sanso: Colors, two sets of works are presented to highlight contrasts in Sanso’s artistic oeuvre. First, a set of textile designs from 1958 to 1968, when as a young artist, Sanso supported himself in Paris by creating these for leading fashion houses like Bianchini Ferrier and Balenciaga. The second, rare works on paper, mostly from the 1980s, with flowers and landscapes as the main subjects, which, the artist often kept for himself. Both sets of works have been chosen to highlight an aspect of his practice: color and his manifold ways of combining them to achieve a balanced composition and mood.

In the late 1950s, striving to make a living in Paris as an artist in competition with thousands of others who flocked to this center of art and design, was undoubtedly tough. As a center of fashion, Paris was home to the leading fashion houses trying to outdo each other and take dominance by presenting unique designs. The young Sanso was able to make a living from this and through it, find access to important connections, such as to Elsa Schiaparelli, a designer who collaborated with Picasso, Dali, Miro and many of the important budding artists of that time. It was through Schiaparelli that Sanso gained access to his first solo exhibition. Combining his training both as a painter and as a serious printmaker, Sanso was able to create bold and striking patterns which separated him from other textile designers.

The same techniques have been harnessed by Sanso in the second body of works. But instead of focusing on attracting the eye with bold contrasts, Sanso combines the techniques used with the subjects of landscapes and flowers: both of which lend themselves to quiet introspection. These works focus on private emotions: joy, nostalgia, hope, and contentment.

By juxtaposing these two distinct bodies of work, the public is given access to both his artistic legacy and his person.

Sanso: Colors opens Tuesday, November 28, 2017, 6:30PM at The Gallery, Sky Tower, Solaire Resort and Casino and runs until December 31, 2017. For inquiries, call Galerie Joaquin at (02) 7239418, 7239253 or email