It was my second time to attend the Art Fair, although it’s already in its 5th year. I enjoyed my experience then so I told myself that there was no way that I would miss the next one. More than my love for the arts in general, its ability to evoke emotion and make you vulnerable, is something I find both exhilarating and terrifying. To stand in front of an artwork, giving it the power to infiltrate your mind and fill it with countless thoughts, is art in itself. I indulged myself with all of it during that weekend.
I went with my friends — one of them with a Fujifilm X-T10 — so I was more than delighted to take photos of the art and of myself. As usual, the place was filled to the brim. Tons of people were flooding out as we were heading into the elevator parking lot. It’s best to go in the morning since any time after that it gets really crowded to the point of an impending stampede.
Below are some of my favorites. Most of them were located at the 6th floor since I unfortunately wasn’t able to see the 7th in its entirety.
Al Di La de la Vita (Beyond Life) by Betsy Westendorp (Note: They serve alcohol on the 6th and 7th floors for P200 a glass.)
Mass Hysteria Number Two by Lin Vulan
Rise To Fall, Fall The Sky, or Hover in Between by Geraldine Javier
Astro Bling by Gabriel Lichauco, Filip Houdek & Josef Hlavenka
Forced Farts Cartoon Pain and Daddy Issues or Accident By Voodoo While I Masturbate In The Ghetto Under Water ‘Til Hell Freezes Over is a Freak Show (Installation) by Maria Jeona Zoleta
Uncredited — I was so mesmerized by this that when I finally looked away, I accidentally bumped into a friend and didn’t know how to human for a while. Haha.
Uncredited — I would’ve entitled it, “Take a huge bite off that apple — the world.”
Uncredited — These are tiny paper airplanes that make up a big one. KAWAIII! Haha.
These customized electric chairs by Jose Tence Ruiz illustrate social classes and inequalities in the country. Apologies for the pose! Decided to do it only because Fifty Shades Darker was playing in the same week and it had a BDSM feel to it.
This installation featuring The Wall Of Sound (not photographed) by WSK caught my eye due to the amount of people lining up to get in. Behind the wall was this computer program of sorts playing a recording where I recognized the man on the left to be Ferdinand Marcos. I searched the web to know more about it and found that it was based on a casette sex tape between Marcos and American actress Dovie Beams. The two apparently had a thing while she was in the country shooting a biopic. Now it totally makes sense that the 3D wireframe figures, with their robotic voices, had a very thorough exchange about sex. It was vulgar yet entertaining. There was also a set of blinds with a projection on it that snaps shut every few seconds to show a photo of Imelda Marcos.
I had a wonderful “artventure” and left with a happy heart. It was very refreshing — a lot like post-workout feels after the release of endorphins. It’s always nice to take some time off to revel in life’s pleasures.
I might get a lot of flak for having a lot of pictures taken with the art as the background as others have on social media. I saw a lot of tweets talking badly about others taking their sweet time snapping a bunch of selfies and capturing artsy shots for the purpose of satisfying their feed goals…But I truly believe that we should let people appreciate art in whatever way they can, however they want to. Chances are, they too were touched by it and wanted the memory to be forever immortalized in a photo. If perhaps they weren’t, at the very least they were there to support local art and regardless of their lack of artistic knowledge or ignorance of the art scene norm, they helped in getting their works acknowledged by the public. Let’s all do our part in encouraging conversation rather than cultivating a world full of hate. It starts with something as little as refraining from judging and instead, trying to perceive (and understand) someone else’s reality at an art fair. ✌🏽
[Thank you, Paolo Yupangco, for all the photos! UYYY.]