Jerry Elizalde Navarro
(1924 - 1999)
Jerry Elizalde Navarro was active/lived in Philippines. Jerry Navarro is known for fauve abstract painting, voluptuous nudes, teaching.
Jerry Elizalde Navarro
Biography from the Archives of askART
Jeremias (Jerry) Elizalde Navarro (1924 - 1999) was a multi-faceted quintessential artist with the vision, foresight and prolific genius that made a mould all of its own.
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The richness of his art, its intensity and depth, makes the loss of its creator assume a greater purpose and influence that thrives in that absence. For we distinctly sense what was once and what has been; feel fleeting moments suspended from those shards of hues and colours that reach out from his works and canvasses.
The artist has paid respects to life. He has through discerning vision created avenues for intensity and powerful images - forging, splicing, and moulding bonds between art techniques and a variety of media. The sensual grasp of his images reaches far into the soul, drawing the viewer into the very recesses of his own reasoning. Often baring pains in all their nakedness, confronting truths in mirrors of hues and colours, or seeing through the tedious and the ordinary its glorious self. His works mirror parts of himself. His subjects were the anchor for the dazzling splay of colours that make his canvasses come to life. Free flowing, bold strokes, swift and short dabs and swirls, he forged them into a prism of images. A master in his chosen genre, his work evokes power and deep thought.
A Negrense, he was born in San Jose, Antique on May 22, 1924. He graduated with a Bachelor's degree of Fine Arts major in Painting at the University of Santo Tomas in Manila. He had represented the Philippines in various artistic events from Brazil, Berne, Czechoslovakia, Japan, Indonesia and the United States. The list of his achievements is long and his works ranged prolifically from oils, acrylic, watercolour, sculpture, multi-dimensional and mixed media.
In his relentless pursuit of the ideal, he took cognisance of a formal education in art training as a vital element for creativity, supplemented by experience and constant experimentation. He once wrote: "It is no wonder that graduating from art school while working in advertising graphics resulted in my successful paintings and sculptures. I would say that the stringent parameters of advertising art coupled with the disciplines learned in serious art would help any artist whether he is in painting or art sculpture. Many would agree with me that the same creative adrenaline is expended in the pursuit of any art, be it serious or commercial. In the end, it is one's talent and integrity that arbitrates on whether one has crapped or laid a golden egg."
With an open mind, he absorbed new ideas, techniques and various influences which he observed in his travels and stints overseas. In his one-man exhibition at the Mitsukoshi Gallery in Tokyo (1958), his artworks bore the influence of his fascination with the Japanese traditional art.
In 1969, he taught advance advertising design at the National Art School in Randwick, Sydney. Observing the advanced state of art education, he remarked "My teaching experience had been varied in Manila and I am glad that my teaching stint in Australia at the National Art School, although short lived, gave me the opportunity to look at how developed countries provide a climate conducive to the learning of the arts by young hopefuls. Conversely, I look at the sad state of our art school where 'deplorable' teaching is carried on…"
He not only had numerous one-man exhibitions but he had also participated simultaneously in countless group exhibitions in the Philippines as well as overseas. During the later part of his life, in Parañaque where he and his family decided to settle, he had generously participated in civic art projects and programs in support of upcoming art hopefuls from a poor background.
Ever the relentless artist, he painted ravenously even towards the end. When his fingers grew too weak, his wife Emma who is also an artist in her own right, continually stayed his side to assist him. While illness slowly ravaged him, his art, meantime carried on an independent and distinct identity of its own.
In May this year, his works were exhibited at Ayala Museum, Galleria Veinte Uno and the Drawing Room.
He died on June 10, 1999 of bone cancer at the age of 75. His ashes were lain at the Manila Memorial Park in Parañaque. He is survived his wife - Emma, sons: Jeremy (UP Fine Arts graduate), Chad (UST Architecture graduate) and his daughter and sons by his late first wife - Pearl, Jade and Jeremias, Jr. [Biographical facts supplied by Mrs Emma Villanueva Navarro.]
"Jerry Elizalde Navarro", emanila.com arts, /emanila.com/arts/navarro.htm
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