Originals

About the Artist

Ernest Concepcion was born in Manila, Philippines where he received his BFA then moved to the US in 2002. It was in the lonely town of Englewood, New Jersey where he began The Line Wars, a series of black and white drawings depicting opposing forces engaged in ridiculous battle based on the entertainments of childhood and adolescence.

He has exhibited at the Bronx Museum of the Arts, d.u.m.b.o. arts center, Asian American Arts Centre, The Contemporary Museum in Hawaii, The Queens Museum of NY, The Krannert Museum in Illinois, Exit Art and numerous galleries in the Philippines among others.


My works are experiments in photo-based and landscape portraiture. I employ concepts of war in the process of creation, charging at each painting with renderings of fantastical elements onto straightforward historical imagery, and intervening onto tranquil landscapes with drawn armies marching across the horizon.

My process is akin to a battle being waged on differing surfaces (paper vs. acetate), employing varied materials (pencil vs. sharpie) and divergent techniques (manga vs photorealism) to yield unexpected combatants (Norse Gods vs Filipino cryptids vs Nazi regiments). This springs from a child’s-view of a Philippine colonial past, in addition to an abiding obsession with Filipino, American, and Japanese visual culture, particularly comics, anime, and videogames.

Compulsive patterns, lines and obsessive detail define my work, where tables battle chairs to compete with rednecks who fight aliens who squelch sasquatches who feast on campers. Sketches and doodles—the most rudimentary expression of visual thought—burgeon into wall-size ink drawings that traverse painting.

My new black-and-white paintings evolve from a much older series of ink drawings called 'The Line Wars'. In this body of work, I return to my roots as a traditional photo-based painter, but strike out in a new direction by drawing (pun intended) from an ever-deepening well of conflict-based imagery. Paying homage to the b&w of 'The Line Wars', I withdraw color from my new paintings to focus on the starkness of the 'battle' being waged, resulting in images from world war two that collide with scenes from my-so-called-life. I'd like to think of these new works as possible scenes from an unreleased war film by John Ford, with interventions by Max Ernst.


SOLO EXHIBITIONS:

L.A. Guerra – UNTITLED artprojects, Los Angeles, CA - 2011
Saint Invasion – Saint Joseph’s College, Brooklyn, NY - 2009
Ode To Odin – NY Studio Gallery, NY, NY - 2009
The Line Wars Deluxe – Kentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn, NY - 2008

SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS:

2011
Toy Story – Rockland Center for the Arts, Nyack, NY
Anti-Hero – Altromondo, Manila, Philippines
Can’t Hear The Revolution – Kunsthalle Galapagos, Brooklyn, NY
Mundus Incognita – Mulherin + Pollard, NY, NY
O M G – Phatory Gallery, NY, NY
Survivalism – Light and Space Contemporary, Manila, Philippines
Complete & Unabridged Part II – Osage Kwun Tong, Hong Kong
The Secret Is Out! – Secret Fresh Gallery, Manila, Philippines
Close Encounters – Arts Guild New Jersey, Rahway, NJ
Kangarok (as the Shining Mantis) – Krannert Art Museum, Champaign, IL

2010
Provisions – Nathan Cummings Foundation, NY, NY
Likeness – Hornfleur Gallery, Washington, DC
Cool and Collected – Kenise Barnes Fine Art, Larchmont, NY

2009
News From Nowhere – Good Children Gallery, New Orleans, LA
Urban Garden – Broadway Gallery, NY, NY
Artists In Exile – ARARIO Gallery, NY, NY
A Conflicted State – ISE Cultural Foundation, NY, NY

2008
The Labyrinth Wall: From Mythology to Reality – Exit Art Gallery, NY, NY
Talent Preview ‘09 – White Box Gallery, NY, NY
Pulse Contemporary Art Fair – PPOW Gallery Booth, Miami, FL
New Work By Keyholder Artists In Residence – Lower East Side Printshop, NY, NY
Lost In Your Eyes – Neiman Gallery Columbia University, NY, NY
A Wrinkle In Time – BRIC Rotunda Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
Art Dissident Art – 55 Rue Notre-Dame, Montreal, Canada
The Gift – Queens Museum of Art, Queens, NY
Surreal Naivete – M.Y. Art Prospects, NY, NY
New Prints Show – International Center for Prints, NY, NY
Loaded – Phatory Gallery, NY, NY
Choice Cuts – Good Children Gallery, New Orleans, LA
Against Nature – Kent Place Gallery, Summit, NJ

2007
MISC Video & Performance – NY Studio Gallery, NY, NY
Working Space 07 – Cuchifritos, NY, NY
MashUps – Tastes Like Chicken Art Space, Brooklyn, NY

2006
En Masse – Heskin Contemporary, NY, NY
Interplay – Exit Art, NY, NY
Drawing Stage – City Without Walls, Newark, NJ
Alimatuan: The Emerging Artist as American Filipino – The Contemporary Museum, Honolulu, Hawaii
Grand Union – The Front Room Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
Tactics – Future Prospects Gallery, Manila, Philippines
N.Y.Cubao – Bare Wall Gallery, Manila, Philippines

2005
AAAC 15th Annual Exhibition – Asian American Arts Center, NY, NY
Flippin’ Out: Maynila to Williamsburgh – Goliath Visual Space, Brooklyn, NY
Anti-Star (ABC NO RIO’s 25th Anniversary) – ABC NO RIO, NY, NY
AIM25 (Artist In The Marketplace Program) – Bronx Museum of the Arts, Bronx, NY
Just Visiting - Mag:net Gallery, Manila, Philippines
Are We Having Fun Yet? – Project Diversity ’05, Rotunda Gallery BRIC, Brooklyn, NY

2004
Conventionally Drawn – W/O Walls, -scopeLondon, London, UK
A Stereoscopic Vision – d.u.m.b.o. arts center (dac), Brooklyn, NY
The Ides of March 4th Biennial Exhibition – ABC NO RIO, New York, NY