Hi! My full name is Cynthia Valdes-Garcia. I'm Chacha among friends, Tintee among family. I am a Filipino visual artist. I finished Architecture in 1983 at the University of the Philippines and was fortunate to interrupt my freshman year with a year's study in Modesto Junior College, California. On my senior year back in U.P., my thesis on Bamboo as Appropriate Architectural Technology in the Philippine rural setting enabled me to land a job with prominent Architect Francisco Manosa for a couple of years. The effect of this exposure is my preferrence for Filipino motifs and indigenous materials whenever possible. Working for American designer Docey Lewis taught me to pursue originality and excellent craftsmanship. My short stint with Design House Asia then run by Bea Roxas showed me how great design breaks cultural barriers.
Upon getting married and having a baby, I felt the great need to base my work at home. Going back to being an artist was the most natural decision but I wanted to work on a new medium.
My first introduction to Polyester Resin was through my husband, Ed, who like me, enjoys hands-on innovative work on various materials. He was patching up our car's rust holes with resin and fiberglass and he showed me how resin, when cured, can be handled like wood and can be mixed with fillers or additives to alter its looks and properties. This was in 1988 and since then I have endeavored to interpret resin into artistic yet functional pieces.
In very lay terms polyester resin is very similar to plastic. It is a viscuous liquid in its uncured state and when a catalyst is added, hardens by chemical reaction. Resin is not indigenous to the Philippines but it is commonly used in industrial applications in this country. My efforts are towards using resin as the Filipino alternative to Art Glass.
Last December 5, 1995, I was fortunate to have the Ayala Museum in Makati as venue for my first solo exhibit on what I consider a breakthrough in my experiments with "resin-approximating-glass" or SimulGlass (c). The exhibit was literally a spritual journey for me.
My sights are now set on interpreting resin in conjunction with both natural and artificial light ...
Hope I get a few commissions out there.