Kuh Ledesma

Of swirly strokes & schlock for healing
By Earl D.C. Bracamonte

                                    “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and
                                      I in you, you will bear much fruit. Apart from me, you can do
                                      nothing …”                                                    (John 15:5)

Despite her wide renown as an accomplished performing artist, chanteuse-par-excellence Kuh Ledesma wears many other hats in pursuing the varied inclinations she has been immersed with – assuming various roles in the course of her ever-thriving career; on the foreground, as well as in the background. Her stints with television, the celluloid screen, and the concert stage is one tough act to follow.
Unbeknownst to many, Kuh is a visual artist too! It is this latent side of her artiste-persona that’s she’s rediscovering after a hiatus of four decades. “Forty years ago, I painted almost every day while in high school. But when I went to Bacolod for college, my focus shifted. The busyness of Nursing School took me away from the easel.
“After college, my singing career took off and I thought I was content with that. But I found out that it is not good for us to bury our talents. God has a purpose for what He gives us. He gives some people more talents and ‘gifts’ and it is important to Him that we use it to give Him glory and praise,” intimated the lovely singer, in her mellifluous voice.
Kuh was referring to the Parable of the Ten Talents from the Book of Matthew in the New Testament. In this interesting passage from the Holy Scriptures, God called the servant who had one talent, asked for an accounting and was told he buried it on the ground. He got it from him and gave it to the one who already had twenty!
“It makes sense because believers are God’s servants and the increase we make through our God-given talents is our way of showing gratitude. A portion (tithe) must be given to widen His Kingdom here on earth. In so doing, we find our joy when He reveals to us what we can do through Him.
“The cellos I paint represent the second verse from Psalm 95. It says, ‘Let us come before Him with thanksgiving and extol Him with music and song.’ My vine-and-branches paintings, on the other hand, are inspired from John 15:5. As a young girl, I painted floral patterns because I love flowers. They were usually of blooms from the vines that crept around the hacienda homestead.
“In this exhibit, you’ll see a lot of swirls as they denote joy; being the happy person that I am. I sometimes go for bright hues, though not often. I employ minimal color most of the time. I experiment with various shades. For this collection, you’ll see a lot of black canvasses with streaks of gold, iridescent paint.
“Becoming a Bible believer and follower of Jesus has made me realize that we are to give God glory in all that we do and see how wonderful the beauty of His purpose is,” intoned the multi-awarded artist, who once sat as member of the judges’ panel in the 1987 Miss Universe in Singapore.
Simply dubbed “The Beauty of Purpose,” Kuh’s  2nd one-woman exhibit will unfold in late January next year at the White Space Events Place in Makati City. “The first one was entitled ‘Unexpected.’ Like my first exhibit, there will be forty works on display to mark the number of years I was away from painting.
“My reason for painting has become clear to me. The purpose of my exhibit this year is to raise enough funds to produce a movie on healing. The title of said forthcoming movie is Hilom (Heal) and it will be shown next year. It is my hope that this film will expose the perils of believing in quack doctors (albularyos) and instead believe in the power of the Word of God and the power of prayer which is the Holy Bible,” she continued.
“Intense prayer, and not albularyos, is what heals the ailments we have. If the healing is not from God, spirits will be entrapped thereby creating more damage than good. If it is not from the Almighty, the healing will be temporary. It means the sickness came from him who caused it and thus can cure it; making the sick believe that he cured it and then believing it is good; deceiving the weak in spirit,” warned the born-again artist.
The independent (indie) film will be based on true stories and real accounts.
“Our country is in desperate need of healing in so many areas. The Hilom project will be a movie focusing on the plight of families in need of physical, relational, financial, and emotional healing; intertwined with real-life situations showing struggles and victories. It will also chronicle the pain I went through, of unforgiveness, and ultimately the healing that ensued. It’s a story on how miracles moved people’s lives,” said Kuh at the close of a very intimate colloquy.
Kuh counts Picasso, Salvador Dali and Sir Francis Bacon as some of her favorite painters and singles out Gustav Klimt’s “The Kiss” as her most favorite work of art.
Kuh will cast the vision about this project in detail on the occasion of her exhibit opening towards the end of January 2014 at the White Space Events Place along Pasong Tamo Extension in Makati City.


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