It is no longer just restos and cafes who are teeming with people in the bustling urban center that is Iloilo City these days. The art galleries provided a new world among the Ilonggos with monthly art shows that offer a variety of subjects and mediums to view and reflect from.
The month of November was heightened by the recently concluded Visayas Islands Visual Arts Exhibition and Conference (VIVA ExCon) held in Roxas City. The event is complemented in Iloilo City by three major arts exhibits which shows the recent works of intuitive Ilonggo artist Marrz Capanang, renowned Visayan artist Nunelucio Alvarado, and a group show “MADMAD.”
The works of Alvarado entitled “Songs from the Sea” is now a featured show at the Hulot Gallery of the Iloilo Museum of Contemporary Art (ILOMOCA) at the Casa Emperador at the Megaworld Business Park.
“Panakayon sang mga Tinubo” presents the recent works of intuitive artist Marrz Capanang at the art gallery mezzanine of Mamusa Art Bistro, just beside ILOMOCA.
In addition, “MADMAD”is an art show which gathered the works of 40 Ilonggo artists from the different islands of Western Visayas. It will be a featured exhibit of Museo Iloilo until December.
Panakayon sang mga Tinubo (Mamusa Art Bistro)
Ilonggo artist Marrz Capanang follows an art process and philosophy he called ‘interconnection and synchronicity’ – a principle and process he has applied in all of his works.
Capanang’s process is grounded from intuition; hence, he is referred to as an intuitive artist and with an activist heart. The area that paves the way for intuition is the right hemisphere [of the human brain] – a section where creative thought, art, music, and emotion emanates, explained by the artist. This is the reason why his works depicts fluidity.
A third solo show by Capanang, “Panakayon sang mga Tinubo” is a tribute of the artist to the Indigenous Peoples of the Philippines. In this show, the artist illustrated in canvas the plight of our indigenous people who are residing in isolated peaceful areas yet they confront deliberate marginalization and exploitation from capitalists and state-led efforts, such as; mining, quarrying, construction of mega-dams, and anti-insurgency drive.
Panakayon sang mga Tinubo is a way of visualizing the issues through the canvas and raise concern on how progress can sidetrack and compromise the guardians of our history, culture, and heritage.Panakayon sang mga Tinubo will be on show until November 22, 2018.
Songs from the Sea (Iloilo Museum of Contemporary Art)
In the show “Songs from the Sea,” Nunelucio Alvarado shifts his gaze on the coastal areas of Sagay in Negros Occidental, a town far removed from the concrete cacophony of the city. Nune Alvarado, as he is fondly called by colleagues, made not only a home, but a community in Sagay, far from the opulence of Bacolod and Silay, but in no way removed from the concerns of Negros Island.
Like most of Alvarado’s work, Songs from the Sea begins with a story, and here we start with the most seemingly mundane objects. Recovering rocks, sticks, paper, and plastic, the show is an attempt at reclaiming humility and recognizing how space is shared not only within society, nor only among humanity, but with everything that surrounds us.
The show is also a story of restoration. Alvarado recounted how he had badly stubbed his toe on a rock which shattered his nail and bled. Yet he retaliated by using a brush to paint giving the stone a color.
Nune Alvarado is a founding member of the Black Artists in Asia – a prominent artists’ collective on the Visayas. The Songs from the Sea will be on exhibit until December 10, 2018.
MADMAD (Museo Iloilo)
The title “MÁDMAD” is a common Hiligaynon term which is used to describe“to become fully awake, wide-awake, to get one’s thoughts clear, to wake up”.
The exhibit showcases artworks of 40 Ilonggo artists who depicts stories evolving around the theme: unity through diversity. In this collection, the participating artists shares stories from the different walks of life using their own perspectives and interpretations.
Guided by the saying “for everything, there is a season and reason,” the artworks in MADMAD offers a variety of medium that express the advocacies of the artists in visual art form. It will be on show until December.