'You have not made me suffer, merely wait.'
- Pablo Neruda, 'You would come' in The Captain's Verses
Counting the poet Pablo Neruda as one of his influences, Marcel Antonio can be considered a romantic at heart. His paintings often have a narrative composed by the artist who is inspired by the books he reads. In this featured work The age of summer, Marcel Antonio creates and paints 2 lovers and their love affair. His protagonists in the work are seen to be in want to be together. The female, Orria, is sitting by the phone in anticipation of a telephone call from John, who is separated from her by the window and unable to engage her. Orria and John had met in The Philippines when Orria was visiting from Europe. They had both stopped to ask for the time at the same moment from the same man, and that was their initial encounter. After spending 5 months with each other, Orria had to return to Europe. They then made a pact to meet that summer in Europe. The title, The age of summer, signifies the importance of time between the lovers, their maturing affection and their wait for the impending reunion in the coming months. The ache in yearning for this re-encounter is encapsulated in this painting with the faces of the couple emotionally withdrawn and their only source of communication is the telephone which bridges their physical distance and alleviates the pain of the wait.
The son of Filipino artist couple, Angelito Antonio and Norma Belleza, Marcel Antonio uses his paintings to tell stories and is inspired by the bittersweet romance of love.