"Form and Balance" Philippine Inquirer November 27, 2006 by Erlinda Bolido
Potter Hadrian Mendoza teams up with uncle Rachy Cuna for an exhibition of ceramic pieces and sculpture.
When Hadrian Mendoza had his first pottery exhibit about a decade ago, His uncle Rachy Cuna was perhaps the proudest of all, touting the show to his friends and acquaintances like a veteran impresario who knew he has a winner on his hands.
Mendoza was an accidental potter. He was home for an extended vacation, having lived in the United States for several years, when a serendipitous meeting with ceramic artist Jon Pettyhohn got him interested in pottery. After this show, he went back to the US for a while, then returned to become a "full-time" potter, making a name for himself and partnering with Pettyjohn in the Pettyhon-Mendoza workshop. Meanwhile his uncle, originally celebrated for his innovative and trend-setting floral arrangements, had also moved on, putting his talents to bear on such diverse projects as events and home-styling, painting, jewelry and home-accessory design.
It was not before uncle and nephew decided it was time for a family project, a joint show. Both Cuna and Mendoza agree it was the younger man who broached the idea of a collaborative exhibit. For Cuna, it was an opportunity to explore yet another field he had been wanting to go into- sculpture. "I had been doing sculpture but this is the first time I exhibit my work," he said. After a year of gestation the show "Reunion- balance and form" was born. It features 30 sculptures by Cuna and 60 pottery items by Mendoza. They divided the owrk by having Cuna take care of balance and Mendoza in charge of form.
Cuna's sculpted pieces are literally balancing acts- metal figures, many of them with human forms, holding crystal globes, feet firmly planted on solid kamagong blocks. The position of the feet changes ever so subtly, almost unnoticeable at first glance, from one image to the next.