Hey July, In Squares

*Better late than never, right? My phone was really at its weakest by this month so I barely took any photos. Apart from my usual eating and working habits, here are just some of the newer things I dove into last July. 


Museums: The old and the new

I was able to visit my grandparents and their place, during which I got to see old books, paintings, statues, sculptures, and photographs. It’s like walking into a time machine and getting to know bits of the lives of people you thought you knew all too well, but it proves there’s always more to people. The things people own, hoard, collect, and cherish can say a lot about them. There’s also a story behind every single keepsake.

I was also able to attend the Inspire Every Day 2015 launch hosted by the Ayala Museum, and it was an unforgettable experience. There’s just something about the idea of artists, struggling artists, and art enthusiasts alike, all coming together for the sake of… well what else? Art—without the usual fee and for a better cause. On the third floor, Juan Luna’s From Citadel to City stood beside Fernando Zobel de Ayala’s year round exhibition. I was surprised to say, my favorite of his minimalist pieces has been my favorite since I first visited during a grade school field trip. On the second floor, the exhibit Felix Laureano: First Filipino Photographer held hauntingly historical photos alongside the advances of photography in the country. Around the museum, workshops, activities, and craft sales took place and on the ground floor, four pillars were canvases to the thousands of 4 x 6 submissions by artists yet to be discovered.

As this year’s focus was on kindness, painter and illustrator Valerie Chua teamed up with the museum to arrange a kind of exchange of postcards where each person could choose one artwork from the massive collage that spoke to him or her the most, and take it home as a keepsake. At the back of each postcard were the names and contact details of the artists. I didn’t get to submit any (boo) but I sure was able to join in the excitement, rattle, and roll for the picking. When it was my turn, I spent 10 minutes unable to decide what to get. (Clue: Two of my faves are in the photo below)

My dad’s exhibit, Element, was a collection of round abstract expressionist works which take on the idea of the famous symbol of oneness in Taoism, the round yin and yang. His interpretation of it and his reflection on the metaphor of life is also an evolution in itself from his previous abstract paintings. I’m really proud of him and his growth as an artist, exploring different methods and playing with colors. Although he doesn’t like it when I talk about it, I hope to see more of his works and share to the rest of the world what he’s capable of and more importantly, how he sees things. 

I’ve also been experimenting and stepping outside my own comfort zones in terms of art. I dabbled with watercolor more and I started understanding the discipline through trial and error. Painting faces of my idea of beautiful women was something that kept me up for nights last July and it was both a challenge and guilty pleasure. My palette, although predictable, steadily remained pastel, but I’m not as afraid with opening up the brighter tubes of paint, apart from my usual hues of red and blue. Inspired by minimalist tattoo designs and geometric art, I had my hand in attempting to illustrate something simply by finding the shapes that consisted it. From there, I mapped out the image I wanted to illustrate. I hope I’ll have more time to do this in the future so I can begin combining different techniques and develop a more unique style.

july

Backpacks in a Tohoku Japan exhibition, Some of the works displayed during Inspire Every Day 2015, Dresses I couldn’t buy, Magazine fix, My granfolk’s room, Experimenting with geometry, My dad’s latest exhibition, A Spanish home

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