Demetrio dela Cruz

b. 1971, Manila, Philippines
Lives and works in Philippines

The artwork of Demet, or Demetrio dela Cruz, is characterised by an excellently executed traditional, or better realistic, style combined with different media and materials. His educational background in advertising has influenced his work, as he is presenting the objects in his work often in painted window frames or on top of painted pedestals. His paintings as well as his mixed media works, currently executed on successive layers of transparent acrylic sheets, are approaching the next higher dimension, trying to leave the two-dimensionality of the canvas. Motives vary, but include a centre object surrounded by several layers of additional, sometimes modified objects, including skulls of the centre object, as well as religious, traditional and other common motives. His cows/respective handbags series is most recognised by collectors in the Philippines, stirring trouble among big luxury bag companies.

To pay homage to his father, his early watercolour paintings were realistic figures of farmers planting and harvesting rice. He quickly gained attention in 2001 when his painting of street children, Kalawang bagged the Top 30 Jurors’ Choice at the Philippine Art Awards. After his entry, ‘Being Recyclable,Recyclable Being’ was declared the grand prize at the Daler Rowney Philippines Art Competition in 2005, two more acclaims came his way in 2006 when he received the Top 5 Jurors’ Choice Award at the First National Drawing Competition, and the Philip Morris Art Awards for his paintings and Images. Success chased him again in 2007 when his entry, ‘Target’, copped the grand prize at the Art Association of the Philippines Annual Art Competition.

In 2008, Demet staged his first solo exhibition, interARTive at the Art Centre in SM Megamall. That same year, his painting, ‘Eco-Guardians’ was declared the grand prize winner at the Lions Club On-the-Spot Mural Painting Competition. During this period, Demet introduced his ‘Window Display’ series, and continued to work on Filipino myths and these themes in his ensuing paintings.

BIOGRAPHY INFORMATION FROM THE ARTIST’S WEBSITE, APRIL 2024.

Country: Philippines
Instagram: demetstudio