If you are still around, it would (maybe) interest you to know that Nothing Spaces turned two a few days ago! I’ve been experiencing server errors for the past month and a half, so I’ve held off posting, but I am pretty sure that I’ve fixed the problem (concerned the IP address my FTP account was pointing to), so I’ll be posting pretty regularly here again.
I have a bunch of posts up my sleeve right now, I just have to get around to writing them. Some will probably be exciting! Others, not so much. In any case, I just wanted to say that NS turned two (!) and that I am not dead. A list of things I have been up to:
- Bangkok! I went with Karen, Therese, Roxy & Sarie. We stayed there a whopping 8 days, and had a great time eating and just exploring the city. Here is a photo post, in case you missed it. I would very much love to go back.
- Bohol! I went with my family to Bohol, one of the Philippines’ biggest tourist destinations. I have never been, and although our stay was quite short, I had a really great time with my folks.
- Farm Visit part 2. Went to Herbana Farms again this weekend, where we had a great frakking lunch (no joke). I brought home rosemary and lavender plants for my mom.
And so on! It’s funny, but I think I have been out of the house more times in the year I’ve been out of college, than during all four years that I was in it. I think I’ve been opening up a bit more. One of the best things I’ve learned on my Bangkok trip is that shyness is a crutch. More on that soon.
A big personal victory for me was contributing to Rogue for the month of May. I held off posting about it, because I didn’t have my physical copy yet, and then things got in the way. But here, I am announcing it now. This is one of the pieces that I made for the issue. Here is another one:
I hope you guys get a copy, because—and I don’t mean this as a pat on my own back—it’s such a great issue, touching on a wide variety of topics and it has a lot of great art by Dan Matutina.
In the meantime, I’m working on some posts (I have a lot in mind and they are a jumbled mess in my head!), and a give-away for Nothing Spaces’ second birthday. For everyone who stuck by weird server shenanigans, thank you! My traffic went way down, but I got a lot of messages telling me my blog was down and that they missed it.
Just so you know, I missed you guys, too.
It’s kind of a funny story.
I have been to Bangkok before. I always thought I’ve gone once before in my life, but various members of my family have been saying that I have actually been there twice already. I don’t know; I don’t remember. We don’t even have a Thai magnet on our fridge. That’s how small an impression it’s made on me.
So, I don’t even know why I booked this trip in the first place. At the time, a couple of near-strangers (plus Karen) were going because of a promo-fare. I’m glad I went anyway, though! The company was stellar, Bangkok was lovely, and even though I am pretty much going to be dirt poor for the next couple of months, I’m pretty happy. I spent eight days in that foreign country, and I missed it before even leaving.
More photos soon! I suppose these are teasers.
It’s Cinco de Mayo! So, naturally, I am hauling ass off to Bangkok. I will be back on the twelfth, so I don’t know, maybe you can email me if you need me. I wanted to put a queue on this thing so there’s some semblance of life during this week-long absence, but I got overwhelmed by laziness and you know, general lack of interesting things to say. However, I will try to blog using my phone. I’m leaving my laptop, and I am already undergoing separation anxiety.
My plan for may was actually sort of going to be something self-transformational, so I was going to go over goals and make actual plans for things. But obviously, that didn’t happen. I was undergoing a minor crisis yesterday, which isn’t ideal when you are just about to go on a trip, but those are things you can’t really help, I guess.
One goal I actually pushed through with (or looks like I am anyway), is my plan to make May my sci-fi/fantasy reading month! Last month was, with no intent, a non-fic reading month. Maybe themed months are what work for me, who knows? In any case, I’m bringing the first two installments of C.S. Lewis’ Space Trilogy: “Out of the Silent Planet” and “Perelandra.” I have about eight more titles, because I am either ambitious or pretty stupid, but I’m quite excited.
Wrote that entry before I left but never got around to posting it! I’ve spent a day and a half in Bangkok, so far, and it’s so different from what I remember.
Been around so many parts of the city, and I’m still so excited!
Part Two: In which I show you what we made together
I attended the workshop with six other people: my brother, Meggie Ong, Jason Moss, Dex Fernandez, Jigger Cruz, and Paolo Ferrer. I did not know any of them, except for my brother, going into it. Obviously was very nervous and fake-shy, but that quickly went away, because they were all much better at being sociable than I was. This is where I will post pictures of what we made together along with Bongoût (Anna Hellsgård and Christian Gfeller), Manuel Ocampo, and Carlo Ricafort.
We made two-color covers, experimenting with many-colored ink passes through the screen. It turned out okay, I think. Some of the local inks were a bit tricky to deal with though, because you had to mix them with this thing called an extender (if I am not mistaken), but we were mostly happy with the results.
Some copies are available at DAGC Gallery, I think. You can drop by (Pasong Tamo Ext.) if you want to take a look. I have two in my possession (01 and 09), so you can also ask me to see them, if we’re friends! I’d be happy to show you.
Part One: In which I tell you about most of it.
Last weekend, I was a part of a three-day silkscreen workshop conducted by Bongoût (Berlin) and DAGC Gallery (which is located along Pasong Tamo Extension. I posted about their formal opening over here). I was going to be all profound and was planning on waxing poetic about how much of a privilege it was to have been part of the workshop, but I will spare you, whoever you are, and let these pictures speak for themselves.
A couple of things:
One, I did have a lot of fun.
Two, I learned a lot.
Three, sometimes being thrown into something big and meaningful with a bunch of people you don’t know is the best kind of adventure there is. Aside from my brother, I didn’t really know anyone else who was part of the group. I laughed like a lunatic, though. It’s great when you can joke around and work with the same people.
To breeze through the process, here’s what happened:
2. We exposed these drawings to BLINDING LIGHTS so as to make impressions on the silkscreen. The screens have been coated with photo-sensitive emulsion.
(P.S. This is one of our teachers, Christian. He’s been doing this since he was in school.)
A list of some of the things I took away from this experience:
- I never want to hold another 9-to-5 again. If I could do these things and just make stuff for the rest of my life, without having to live in a box, I would be very happy.
Which is to say, I really had so much fun. I imagined myself waking up every morning and just thinking about what I could draw or make or put together, and it was just such an attractive option for me. Of course, the dread of Living In a Box loomed over me, but I think I’d rather be happy this way, than sort-of happy with a bank account I don’t even get to use. If that makes sense.
More photos under the cut! Under which, we draw a lot, drink some beer, and act silly. Also, you may notice, I may or may not be really attracted to tattoos. Not people with tattoos, just tattoos, in general. I just love how they look, but that is all I have to say about it. They have a knack of disappointing you, though.
And, since this is pretty image heavy already (and maybe also to prolong the suspense—although, not really, really), I’ll be posting photos of the finished books in another entry, aka part two.
Or, there are way too many awesome shows going on in the Philippines right now, and I can’t possibly go to all of them, but here is a post in which I try to go to as many as I can in a night.
(I am itching to update about the weekend, only because it was super awesome—until the very, very end, and then it kind of went to the nearest, shit-sparsiest part of Shitville. But that is another tale for another day.)
I don’t go to a lot of shows (at least, not as much as I’d like to), but apparently I go to them more than the average person. The usual reason is that people don’t really know when shows open. My family goes to them a lot, and I kind of joke about how these excursions are actually family field trips, because I have a lame sense of humor. But anyway. On the 27th of April, I went to properly see 3 shows, all of which were, on most levels, inspiring.
Painters as Photographers is a group show featuring photographs taken by artists who usually work on paintings, rather than photographs. It was curated by Racehl Rillo, and featured the works of Geraldine Javier, Patty Eustaquio, Yasmin Sison, and Nona Garcia. It was interesting to see how they worked with a medium that they didn’t really use in most of their works. I felt like the whole show wasn’t very cohesive, like they weren’t telling the same story. I love that they moved away from their typical mediums and did work that they weren’t particularly known for, though.
Lara delos Reyes
An Impossible Farewell is the first show of Lara delos Reyes’ that I’ve seen, so I’m not familiar with her work, but I am impressed and moved. I love it when artists use unexpected mediums, and in this case, she rendered many images and text using embroidery done with hair. It’s interesting to see also the contrast of dark imagery with the delicateness of what she used as her base (which look to be vintage embroidered handkerchiefs, correct me if I’m wrong). I get really excited when people play around with new ideas, so this was especially refreshing to me.
Lara delos Reyes (detail)
I’m not sure until when these shows will be on view, but you can drop by Silverlens and SLab at 2320 Pasong Tamo Ext. Warehouse 2, Yupangco Building, between 10am and 7pm (M-F) or 1pm and 6pm (Sat). You can give them a call if you want to make sure they’re open when you plan to go: (632) 816-0044.
RE:SURGO! is a two-man show by Berlin-based artists Anna Hellsgård and Christian Gfeller. They run Bongoût, which is “an independent artist-run space.” Re:Surgo! is “a silkscreen & design studio, an art publishing company, and a retail store devoted to the diffusion and promotion of innovative creation.”
Re:Surgo! is the inaugural show of the newly-opened DAGC Gallery. The show featured large format prints that are unique (meaning, they’re producing only one of each). I have a couple of favorites, but no money to burn, so I’m just going to stand in the distance and admire them. What I love about them is that they produce a lot of unique books using traditional screenprinting techniques, some of which are on display. They seem to believe in the power (and magic!) of collaborative work between artists, because as much as they create art together, they also have a lot of pieces and collaborations with other artists from all over the world.
Over the last weekend, they also held a three-day workshop for people interested in silkscreen printing, and it was a lot of fun. I’ll be posting about that when I get the time (which I hope is soon). In the meantime, bask in the greatness of these works.
RE:SURGO! is going to be on view until the 4th of June at the Department of Avant-Garde Clichés Gallery, located at 2289 Pasong Tamo Extension, UPRC III Building, Makati City. You can give them a call at (632) 817-2042 for gallery hours.
This way to more photos. Continue reading A little bit of artistry….