|Bendigo Art Gallery |
42 View Street, Bendigo VIC 3550
|28 Oct 23 - 04 Feb 24|
Marikit Santiago: The kingdom, the power brings together recent works by celebrated Western Sydney artist Marikit Santiago in her first solo exhibition in Victoria.
Santiago’s compelling work excavates the complex inheritances of religion, ancestry, and gender as a Filipina-Australian woman, child of migrants, mother, and artist. In monumental allegorical paintings and exquisite votive-like studies, Santiago casts her own family in richly symbolic and dramatic scenes. Weaving together the iconography of the Western art canon and pop culture references, Santiago appropriates biblical narratives and contemporary media to confront personal history and universal themes of transgression, liberation, and reclamation, with tenderness and courage.
The title of the exhibition references a phrase spoken by the congregation during Catholic Mass, which praises God as creator of earth and humankind. In The kingdom, the power, Santiago considers the privileges and obligations of the ‘Eden’ created for her by her parents, who migrated to Australia in the 1980s, and in turn, the world she is constructing for her own children.
Santiago’s figurative painting is both classical and highly contemporary. She blends luscious oil paint and gold leaf with humble found materials, such as cardboard boxes and texta. Her three young children appear not only as cherished subjects in her paintings, but as her artistic collaborators, contributing ever-changing marks within Santiago’s polished figuration.
See how Marikit Santiago explains more about her artwork and the inspiration behind it in this video.
A room guide for Marikit Santiago: The kingdom, the power, with a full list of works and introductory essay by June Acido Miskell, is available to download here.
Image below: Marikit Santiago, Filipiniana (self-portrait in collaboration with Maella Santiago) 2021, acrylic, interior paint, pen and oil on found cardboard. Photo by Mim Stirling. Courtesy of the artist. Marikit Santiago is represented by The Something Machine, New York.
Locate Marikit Santiago: The kingdom, the power on our Gallery map.
Marikit Santiago lives and works on Dharug Country in Western Sydney. She is a three-time finalist in the Archibald Prize and in 2020, was the winner of the prestigious Sir John Sulman Prize. In 2022, Santiago held her first institutional solo exhibition at Sydney’s renowned 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, followed by solo exhibitions at Fairfield City Museum & Gallery and Museum of Art and Culture Lake Macquarie yapang, in 2023. Marikit Santiago is represented by The Something Machine, New York.
Image below: Marikit Santiago in her parents’ backyard, North Rocks, Western Sydney, 2021, photographed by Garry Trinh, courtesy the artist and 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
Marikit Santiago: Thy Kingdom Come