With its face and bodily proportions stretched out like the figure of Edvard Munch's The Scream, Elmer Borlongan's painting of a child sleeping in a dimly-lit corner on a bare concrete floor possesses a foreboding drama that is rare in the artist's oeuvre. The single source of light casts a long shadow of a post that runs across the feet of the dormant boy, like an ominous presence that watches over his slumber. Yet, with his palm as a pillow and the other nestled for warmth between his knees, our sleeper is unaware, almost dead to everything else in the world. It is the sleep of extreme exhaustion, from going through a day's worth of work, or of endless meandering and seeking for alms and food. It is a sleep of an animal that has run out of energy to scrounge and is content to find the darkest, most secure place it can find, as shelter.
Acrylic on Canvas
61 x 76.5 cm (24 x 30”)