“Art Fair Philippines is the premier platform for exhibiting and selling the best in modern and contemporary Philippine visual art. The fair aims to mirror the vibrant local art scene and continue to generate support for Filipino art practitioners. Set in an alternative urban venue, Art Fair Philippines makes art accessible to enthusiasts and to those who want to discover one of Southeast Asia’s most exciting art landscapes.”

Last Thursday (February 16, 2017), my friends (JOHN, MICHAEL, Gillian, Hazel, Alyanna) and I went to the first day of the Art Fair Philippines. Since it was my first time to join in this kind of event, I was so hyped to check what’s in it about the annual Art Fair! I honestly don’t have much expectations. All I know is that I’ll have fun and learn more about this event.

There were around 40 galleries by the different Artists and 11 exhibits by the Contemporary Artists in different parts of our country. Despite of this, there were still galleries and exhibits that stayed into my mind while roaming around the place. Below are the galleries and exhibits that made a mark throughout my visit in the Art Fair Philippines 2017.


Ambience of the gallery

Edouard Malingue was able to present a range of work by its roster of artists spanning multiple mediums. On display will be paintings by Yuan Yuan, Wang Zhibo, Callum Innes, Laurent Grasso, Nuri Kuzucan, and artist collective Tromarama. This gallery caught me right after I went to the 7th floor of the Link. It was simple yet organized. It doesn’t have much participants compared to other galleries, but it was the closest ambience I want. Walking through here makes you feel calm and get closer with the works.

“Through the variety and scope of the works, the gallery presents an example of its programme that places Western and Eastern artists in dialogue with one another.”
TROMARAMA • “Classroom, 2016” • 3D Lenticular Print • 80 x 150 cm, Edition 3/5 + 3 AP

When I first saw this, I only have one thing in my mind — and that would be our classroom experiences as a student. I got to see the beauty of this when I looked at it for a long time and able to see how this work attract us, millenials. Through this work, I was able to realize how we are able to attract the people around us. I, as a student knows the feeling of being seen by the people around you especially if there were alot of intrigues that is happening inside your classroom or workplace. This affects how people see you for who you are. Just like now in our society, we sometimes cannot adapt easily because of our emotions.

YUAN YUAN • “Osmel’s Toys, 2016” • Oil on Linen • 290 x 190 cm

This work also got in my head. As you can see in the ambience of the gallery above, this artwork was the biggest artwork that was presented by Edouard Malingue. At first, I was able to just see how the toys were arranged accordingly in a living room of a house. But then looking at it deeply, you would be able to see and feel that there were missing in this work — that would be ‘Osmel’ or the one who will going to play those toys. Relating this now in our society, I was able to realize that we as a countrymen should make use of our resources properly and not just waste it. Just like the toys in the artwork, it was properly arranged accordingly however there were no one who make use of their importance and uses.

NURI KUZUCAN • “Surfaces, 2016” • Acrylic on Canvas • 180 x 175 cm

This artwork was able to see how modernization affects our society and the actions of people. You’ll get to see the modern building in this work wherein it lets you realized how well you explore in terms of coping up in the change that is now rapidly increasing in our environment. I was able to see the beauty of the building however, there were instances wherein I see how messed up our society is. It lets you feel mixed emotions in this work — the real beauty of the modern world and the cold society today.

Overall, Edouard Malingue’s Gallery was still an interesting one! It lets me see and realize the real world today. We should not get blinded with the people around us. We should make use of what we have and treasure the things that needed importance.


Design of his exhibit

Ronald Ventura has an ongoing exhibition Shadow Forest: Encounters and Explorations at the Metropolitan Museum of Manila that was also presented in the Art Fair Philippines that improves your imaginative and transcendental journeys and flights. His work portrays scenes of chaotic disarray, incorporating traditional Western and Asian mythologies with contemporary cultural symbols.

“The distinction between humans and animals has been a subject explored across many fields from the sciences to philosophy and creative expressions. On one hand the superiority of human faculties over animals is often stressed and verified. On the other, we encounter instances of humans seemingly behaving like animals and breaching such distinction.”
BLACK SHEEP 2017 Digital Print on Hahnemuhle FineArt Paper • 44 x 64 in.
POISON 2017 Digital Print on Hahnemuhle FineArt Paper • 44 x 64 in.

With the quote above, some of Ronald Ventura’s artwork were subject to the distinction of humans and animals in our society. His artworks caught my attention because sometimes we, as a humans do act like animals wherein we don’t use our minds in the decision-making and the actions that we are doing. Using his artworks, people should see how we need to be open with our society and let our knowledge and wisdom correct us whenever we have done something wrong. The artworks above are just some of his works that was portrayed by an animal. This serves as a reminder for us, Fillipinos, to never get distracted by how people interact with us. We should always use our minds and not just live with the flow of life.

“SEVEN STARS INVERTED, 2o17” Digital print on backlit film, light box • 104 x 87 inches • Model: Gillian Caisido
“Stars represents ideals and achievements. The symbolic of people of prestige, power, and achievement, the ones we look up to like the way we gaze up the night sky and appreciate bright but distant specks in wonder and amazement. This signification is embodied by a composite image of anthropomorphic star shapes, light, and facets, at once confusing and enchanting.”

This work of Mr. Ronald were able to struck me. As what the quote above, stars define as achievements and ideals. It was such a great work because it let’s you see how the stars blink and changes color. It served as a motivation for me to really strive my best especially that I’ll get to the corporate world soon. Appreciating works and graphics like this one would be a great help for a person who has problems and such. Personally, this artwork was one of the best work that I saw inside the Art Fair.

WAVES 2016 Fiberglass, Resin, Woord, Metal, with Video projection/ Sounds • 162 x 30 x 55 in.
“Navigating a vast body of water is a powerful imagery that captures the uncertainties associated with journey, and one that has been regarded by many cultures and artistic traditions as symbolic of the passage to the afterlife. In this life’s journey, humankind is constantly subjected to competing forces from all directions while struggling to keep afloat, a dynamics suggested by a vessel with two people on both ends seemingly heading towards opposite directions as it braves turbulent waves.”

This work were seen as a large boat sculpture which was made of fiberglass, wood and metal. It was in a dark room wherein participants will only get to see it on the window. For me, this work conveys that we shouldn’t forget with our past histories as it will serve as a guide for us, millennials to be strong and never give up with the challenges that we need to face. Through this work, I could say that this served as an eye-opener for me because I am not fond of knowing our past history. However, through this work, I realized that we need to know first our history to be able to learn from it and be successful.

It was a pleasure to see Ronald Ventura’s works because I have learned from it. Even though, I didn’t have the proper knowledge about the background of his artworks, I personally get to realize important matters such as using our wisdom and knowledge, keeping us motivated, and opening our minds with what’s in it about our society for the past years. Kudos to Mr. Ronald to be able to make and present it in this event!


Ambience of his exhibit

Jose Tence Ruiz was known to forecast violence and death towards his work that was named “Langue Lounge” wherein the sculpture represents how a person was possessed in a violence and still willing to be a subject for his notions. It also emphasizes how people used their powers to respond with the environment.

Together with Danilo W. Ilag-Ilag, Toto Talorong, Jimmy de Guzman, Neo Maestro, Lorena Baliña, and Jose Maglaya, Ruiz were able to present it to the people who got to visit the event. It was a great work because it helps the people realize the happenings in our society.

The works that signify the violence, death, and power

The left photo was seen as a face of a woman who was being sanctioned and punished to death. This work symbolizes how we, women, get to be the victims of the tyrannies without us figthing for our rights. The right photo serves as a symbol for the men who uses their power to make the women become submissive as if they own us.

These works of Mr. Ruiz was definitely an eye-catching experience for all of us. With these, people will be more significant about the issues and problems that is happening in our society. Hence, making us interact with this helps you feel how to become a weak person and in return, it makes you value yourself more and the people around you.
Tried this electric chair wherein it symbolizes how people use their powers


One of the exhibit of Maria Jeona Zoleta
One of the work in the Gajah Gallery
Some of the exhibits of WSK

Left photo: “Sex to Speech” • Ted Ermitano

Right photo: “Sound Bridge: Wall of Sound” • Jon Romero

One of the work of Gallery Stephanie called “Balance of Humanity” • Anton del Castillo
“Karayom” • Balat Halimaw (Mini), 2017 • Mixed Media
Some works in the Art Lab
Eye-catching work by Sangviaje entitled “Ang Patuloy na Pag-usad ng Lipunang May Sayad, 2017”

Sangviaje was composed of Daniel Aligaen, John Paul Antido, Edrick Daniel, Dennis Fortozo, Guerrero Habulan, Joven Mansit, Jaypee Samson, and Pogs Samson. Made of Acrylic on canvas.

This event never failed me! It was such a great experience for me as a first timer and I also got to see alot of artworks that really has something in it. Comparing this to the audience way back on my National Museum trip, this event have a lot of participant/audience than the other one. Audiences took opportunity to check the works eye-to-eye. Also, in the National Museum, audiences just go there to look around and some didn’t get to feel the messages of the artworks inside while in the Art Fair, audiences really took some time to get to one artwork to another. It really shows that there are a lot of art enthusiasts that was going around the Art Fair. The location was enough for the exhibits and galleries, however, staff should maintain people around it because it might distract the beauty of each artwork inside the gallery or exhibit just like what the National Museum staffs do.

All in all, it was such an awesome visit for me since I have learned so much from the artists and their works itself. I am looking forward to what’s in it next year. Definitely one for the books!