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Region 6 and 8: Intimacies and communities of practice

“Kalibutan Seminar Node 2: Artists Explore – Intimacies and Communities of Practice” is part of the Visayas Islands Visual Arts Exhibition & Conference (VIVA ExCon) VCon 2 that turned the lens on the artists chosen by the Region 6 and 8 Kalibutan curators.

For Region 6, curator Guenivere Decena was with artists Perry Argel and Denli Chavez. Argel shared his process which starts the day with exploration, cleaning, and organizing things. He makes a connection to forms encountered in the surroundings and creates something out of objects found in collaboration with the environment.

He operates with the belief that the ocean connects him with parts of the world through found objects. His way is ritualistic, collaborative, immersive, and a participatory art approach. He hopes to change the negative way people look at trash. His largest piece is his Ilistaran or dwelling place, the artist’s house as an intertwined idea of form and space which factors in introspection and metacognition.

Denli Chavez acknowledged her training in Bacollywood workshops and shared her work on folklore materials and legends. She has a different take on the legend ‘Siete Picados,’ which redefines rebellion. She is involved in research which to her is going through history and going beyond bounds. Her film, a collaborative effort on production, aims to reflect the circumstances of the audience.

Curator Liby Limoso, also of Region 6, was with collectives/artists AR. Sculptura, EyeCan Creatives, Ron Espinosa, Farida Kabayao, and TM Malones.

AR. Sculptura shared the ideas of revolutionizing architecture, integrating visual arts and culture through contemporary applications of local patterns, believing that every client deserves a masterpiece. Their artworks are in strategic locations, developing public consciousness towards the richness and vastness of Visayan culture. They are also into creating Sugidanon dolls.

EyeCan Creatives does art events, workshops, documentaries, paintings, illustrations, character design and studies, cosplay and art camps. They make sure works are grounded, sensitive, appreciative of culture and endeavors to bridge the physical realm to the virtual realm. Their art events include Sambit (Sambeat), Bayle, Tigbaliw, Hugod and Dihon. They aim to discover the world in the minds of the Panay Bukidnon.

Ron Espinosa, Farida Kabayao and TM Malones are into performance, design, moving image and sound in a multi-layered and multifaceted art which exhibit the heritage of Western Visayas, the cultural imperialism in Panay and Negros Occidental and finding answers and creative solutions.

Region 8 curator Nomar Miano was with collectives/artists Regional Art Forum and Soika Vomiter. The Regional Art Forum promotes contemporary art practices and regional art which facilitate dialogue or discourse between scholars and practicing artists in the regions. They aim to develop awareness and enthusiasm for regional art among immediate and extended communities, as well as to render service to extended communities of artists and cultural workers.

Soika Vomiter used to focus on street art and paintings and later evolved to being a multidisciplinary artist as he incorporated performance art, time-based art, sound art, and video art into his art practice. To him, Kalibutan is a space of endless possibilities where excitement, adventures, curiosities, and risks reside. He considers the introduction and establishment of contemporary art in his hometown as his major challenge because he said that there is almost a non-existent art scene. His work “The Panic Box” is a representation of himself that finds a connection with the audience.

Lastly, curator Mars Briones of Region 8 was with artists Popo Amascual and RV Sanchez. Amascual experienced contextualizing European materials in the Philippine setting. He applied Theater for Disaster Preparedness and Trauma Therapy that addresses problems that affect communities.

“Hingalo” is his work which involves different respiratory sounds, especially during the pandemic. It is a mediatized sonic performance that engages with the percipient’s own respiration.

RV Sanchez, on the other hand, was initially inclined towards a more academic style of drawing and painting, and later began experimenting with different art mediums to include video installation, performances and photography. He attempts to look closer into how new media creates for us a particular reality which has nothing to do with reality as it is.

He has explored collaboration with art-related groups and organizations, activities with and for the community. In 2017, he started focusing more on performative works and was fascinated with the idea that the concept of gesture and structure can be a reflection of the balancing act that we must achieve in our lives.

V-CON 2 on “Kalibutan Seminar Node 2: Artists Explore | Intimacies and Communities of Practice” was conducted virtually on March 13, 2021 but is available for virtual viewing through the website vivaexcon.org.*

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