LYRA GARCELLANO, DOMINIC MANGILA, LEE PAJE, JO TANIERLA

All Like Hours

Deliberations over disorienting time tell a great deal about what remains consistent amidst constant change. Often, people attribute this to the judgement of the written word: how will history judge? For the moment, let us consider instead the individual’s capacity to let things pass or linger.

The works in ALL LIKE HOURS offer contemplations on the passage of time as a measure that presents itself as an act: remembering, recurring, resisting & being. Informed by research-oriented practices, this dialogue emphasises critical inspection over an acceptance of customs. And where aging time allows for perspective when it previously may have not. Here, arising after numerous conversations in preparation for this exhibition, what reverberates somehow is the artists’ narrative power intercutting through theoretical intersections.

The word “all” holds the burden that things must be absolutely universal. But I wish to dismantle this noun: this sense of “all” may as well be about a commitment to surrender whole energies and interests. It is not too difficult to imagine the vast landscapes offered in ALL LIKE HOURS as portals to be peered through. Providing viewers deep dives into conversations happening individually and an invitation to seeing it all at once.

Lyra Garcellano

Lyra Garcellano presents paintings that belong to her Philippine Carnival Queens series which navigate optics and distortion. Returning to photographs of 1900s Carnival Queens, popular pageantry during the American colonial period to promote relations between the two countries, Garcellano dissolves and dissects the images so only what shapes remain. Meticulously mined to explore ideas of the exotic, the tropics, and the foreign through various lenses of the 'grotesque', and acknowledging that these are representations of othering, Garcellano emphasises that “all contestants were judged according to metrics pre-set by a Western(ised) panel." Such race, gender, and class appraisals only cemented unfavourable forms of standardisations and gatekeeping. Ranging from vibrant to monochromatic, Garcellano references American pop and Spanish casta paintings to offer the twists and tensions of what was once (and still is) romanticised and marvelled.

Dominic Mangila

Posters and paintings that play with text and form from Filipino migrant DJ subculture are explored by Dominic Mangila. Sight and sound thoughtfully rendered through digital illustration and animation softwares visualising movement. The artist’s abstractions zoom in on posters for the San Francisco Bay Area DJ events in the 1990s. Identifying as an immigrant himself, Mangila brings forward a cathartic nostalgia clear and comparably far from contemporary design. And yet, an awareness of the resurgence, a revisitation, of the aesthetic of the early stages of the internet. Mangila depicts how poster design is almost always a response to if not a result of what is accessible and available technology.

Lee Paje

Pieces Lee Paje contributes to this exhibition are informed by a certain camp’s clarion call for citizens to come together and, in return, she asks: What are they asking of the people and for whom do they ask for? Owning the complications of queer, gender, and sexuality studies, the works continue the line of world-building and destabilising stereotypes. In this mode of inquiry, Paje lets the text speak, “I’d often hear off-handed comments targeting women and the LGBTQIA+ which intensified online. This makes clear the changing values that often lead to division, name-calling, sexism, and bigotry.” And so, in discussing the nuances of identities struggling under cultural sexism and misogyny, Paje assembles a space which blurs distinction between vision and visionary. If isolated, Paje seems to dialogue with herself in a suspended space between what is and what could be of a future that remains unforeseen.

Jo Tanierla

Jo Tanierla functions fiction as an anchor in historical activity specifically in the relations between the Philippines and its colonisers. It plots points drawn from extensive research echoing collective sensibilities that have deep implications in the present. A course of urgency, and in equal regard, practicality surfaces in Tanierla’s works: How to depict major mandates vis-a-vis the mundane memories? His practice operates in chapters navigated by a map yet to surface. Pieces here, he notes, are only the beginning, a way to set the scene, motivated by observations into daily necessities and, perhaps, even an acknowledgement of the absurdity that labor and luxury belong in anxieties that result in vastly different outcomes. Tanierla underlines that these are. “mostly isolated narratives for now” and so, perhaps, these works present promises to a nation-in-progress. A romance, if not a desire, that is still at the point of to wait and to be seen.

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LEC CRUZ

Hello, World!

“It’s not where you take things from - it’s where you take them to." 

-Jean-Luc Godard

 

History has granted much favor to the minds behind great works and achievements of our times that often leaves the people behind the creation as mere footnotes.  The world sees the Socrates’s, the Steve Jobs’ or Jeff Koons’ as the great thinker, the innovator, or the creative while those who put the labor in their works as their transcribers, their engineers and their assistants. In the art world, the dawn of ready-mades have greatly underscored creativity as the idea that made the art work possible, demarcating labor from the vision of the work. 

 

Lec Cruz attempts to navigate this line on what we consider as “work” and “creativity” in his solo exhibition, Hello World!. Using keywords and minimal description, Cruz utilizes an Artificial Intelligence (AI) to produce and dictate how his works would look like from its color, composition and feel.   The collective sources and information gathered by the AI prompted the creation of random images for Cruz to work on, becoming a surrogate hand for the AI’s vision. This act leaves the a question to his audience on who created these works – is it the collective minds behind the images, or the hands that produced them? Their meaning, intent, or value as art works are yet to be deciphered by the viewers, democratizing the entirety of art making process with no single entity to own it and without a sole artist. 

 

(leCruz)

RUDOLPH JOHN DOANE

Compiled Fragments

“No memory is ever alone; it’s at the end of a trail of memories, a dozen trails that have their own associations” - Louis L’Amour

The human mind is often unreliable and full of inconsistencies. Recalling specific moments of significance may be an easy task, but one may think it wouldn’t be a stretch of imagination if I’d call it hard to remember every ordinary happenstance in one’s life. Some events are meant to be remembered, while some are be left to the ravages of time; forgotten and erased. The fickle character of human memory is a fascinating thing, sometimes we can’t help but often think about the truth of it all; to recollect a scene from my past so vividly, and in excruciating detail but forget what they ate at breakfast this morning. Unreliable as it may seem, memories we forget or ignore may be remembered by someone else as part of their own story. 

In fact, people may have a habit of staying quiet and observing events as they unfold, or on the contrary observing the uneventful happenings of life; the dullness of a still field of grass and the bustling, rowdy sounds of a busy road. These are realizations to enjoy the simple things in life where we do not look for it, and that these memories are not only our own but also of others. They are interwoven in the consciousness of other people and with their own interpretation and thoughts. This exhibit is to convey just that, to recollect these fleeting moments that were buried and hold them dear. Memories serve as a reminder for us to be better people, but also to look back on ourselves and how we’ve come so far. To hark back on these stories as simple as they may be. 

This exhibit Compiled Fragments aims to portray scenes of forgettable but serene moments in one’s psyche. It is a journey to the most basic of thoughts that our mind has lapsed upon, an exposure on the side thoughts and exposition to images that can stimulate someone’s mind but for some reason ought to not rile the imagination of another.