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Hyphenate


2017, Acrylic on Canvas

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Hyphenate


2017, Acrylic on Canvas

Hyphenate_ALapuSantos

The pressure on mothers to adroitly balance multiple roles nowadays is incredible. For example, we attempt to be conservators of tradition, but also liberal crusaders; which is what I tried to show here with this diptych - a conflict, in harmony. The shrouded woman on the left seems to be more modest, more restrained. The woman on the right strikes a pose that of a warrior, holding what appears to be a sword, a flag, or banner. They may appear to be opposing personalities, but they are of the same woman. That's the challenge of mothers: To be discipliner, provider, entertainer, etcetera, all rolled into one. Nonetheless, it is the capability of present-day women to manage all these responsibilities, and a personal journey through parenthood that inspired me to create this series- the hyphenates and multitaskers, all seemingly captured in a flurry of motion.

HYPHENATE

2017 / 91.4 x 91.5 CM; 45.7 x 91.5 CM each

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Exodus (Shore of Life Vests)


2017, Acrylic on Stacked Canvases

Exodus (Shore of Life Vests)


2017, Acrylic on Stacked Canvases

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In "Exodus", I drew inspiration from news footage of refugees in their life jackets, arriving at the shores of Lesbos on flimsy rubber dinghies. The beach itself is no longer visible as thousands of discarded life jackets litter what was once a pebbly bay. Each of the smaller canvases draws attention to important components of the refugee crisis. First, the life vest symbolizes hope, as these inflatables are the only aides left which refugees can cling to, as they make their exodus across the Mediterranean Sea. Second, the sea's waves represent their tumultuous journey, which doesn't just end once they reach land. And lastly, the faces of the passengers draw focus on the most important thing that we have to remember, that these are individual persons, not just mere statistics. However, as grim as this topic may be, I believe that every crisis is an opportunity – an opportunity for true compassion that transcends borders.

EXODUS (SHORE OF LIFE VESTS)

2017 / 80 x 80 CM (Main Canvas)

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Nina Just Cares For Me


2012, Acrylic on Canvas

Nina Just Cares For Me


2012, Acrylic on Canvas

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If there was anyone I wish I could have met or watched in person, it would be Nina Simone. I deeply love her music and her passion whenever she performed. This is one of my most cherished pieces, which I made for the Galerie Joaquin / 371 Artspace show entitled, "ICONS". I drew inspiration from the cover of the album "Forever Young, Gifted & Black" and the flourescent knife paintings of Francoise Nielly. I wanted to show the vibrancy of her spirit through all the colours and her expressive eyes.

 

NINA JUST CARES FOR ME

2012 / 55 x 46 CM

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Home is a Bowl of Sinigang


2014, Acrylic with sand and gloss medium

on stacked Canvases

 

Home is a Bowl of Sinigang


2014, Acrylic with sand and gloss medium

on stacked Canvases

 

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For this abstract piece I wanted to explore what symbolized home for me, or what was symbolic of my identity as a Filipino. The more I thought of what draws me back home, what makes me feel connected to the Philippines, the more I realized, it was the sense of warmth and comfort that I was really seeking, much like what a bowl of sinigang provides. Sinigang is a sour, tamarind-based soup with many ingredients, and is traditionally served during Sunday lunch in our house when the family is all together.

HOME IS A BOWL OF SINIGANG

2014 / 70.9 x 91.8 CM

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Duyan


2016, Acrylic on Canvas

Duyan


2016, Acrylic on Canvas

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When recalling my childhood and that comforting feeling of security and nostalgia, one of the first things that comes to mind is a popular Filipino lullaby Sa Ugoy ng Duyan (In the Cradle’s Rocking), co-written by National Artists of the Philippines, Lucio San Pedro and Levi Celerio. The song is basically about a mother’s love and finding peace and solace while listening to her song. The lyrics and melody are one that plays in mind over and over, and something that I would like to pass on to my baby. I wished to illustrate this lullaby by featuring a dark room and the main subject that is illuminated by daylight from the corner window is the baby wrapped in a blanket in a traditional cradle hammock, usually made of rattan or bamboo. The rest of the room is also made of woven material: the walls are made of nipa or palm, and even the floor is covered in a banig, a colourful, handwoven mat made of dyed palm or sea grass. This how I see Philippine culture- it’s not just one thing that envelops a child as he or she grows up. It’s not just a singular blanket or crib; it’s layers upon layers of different and interweaving influences, stories, advice, all meant to bring comfort, protect, and help rear a child to leading a good life. And in dark situations, sometimes all we need in order to harness hope or light is to recall the comfort of a mother’s song.

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 DUYAN

2016 / 61.3 x 45.6 CM

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Balete


2016, Acrylic on Canvas

Balete


2016, Acrylic on Canvas

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You could say that Filipinos are a superstitious people. A large tree that lives for centuries, like the balete tree, is believed to house, if not have a spirit of its own. When you do see these actual trees in person, you can almost feel there is a strong elemental presence, and that is why many folklore stories and characters that must be both feared and respected have been built around them. In this painting, I wanted to focus on the spirit and vitality of these ancient trees by emphasizing the texture and intricacy of its roots and intertwining branches and vines (again, a repetition of the interwoven or interlacing theme as shown in the Duyan painting). Although partly inspired by the untamable shape of Piet Mondrian’s Gray Tree oil painting, Balete is much more wild and vibrant in colour.

 BALETE

2016 / 84.3 x 59.4 CM

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Fish Pile


2012, Acrylic on Board

Fish Pile


2012, Acrylic on Board

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Inspired by the frenzy of Pollock's 1943 "Mural". This is one of the two paintings I made for the group exhibition "Underwater Love" for Manila's Pocket Universe Art Collective in Saguijo, Makati City.

FISH PILE

2012 / 60.96 x 60.96 CM

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Lone Balloon


2013, Oil on Canvas

Lone Balloon


2013, Oil on Canvas

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My medium of choice is usually acrylic, but for this piece I chose oil to play with the softness of texture, especially for the cumulus, cotton-candy portions of the clouds. The main focus of this painting, the lone, red balloon looks to have emerged from a dark tunnel beneath the clouds, but above it, there’s a spectrum of radiance and light. The small balloon symbolizes a journey of going from some place ominous to somewhere hopeful. 

LONE BALLOON

2013 / 167.6 X 106.7 CM

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Lifesaver


2014, acrylic on canvas

Lifesaver


2014, acrylic on canvas

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An acrylic painting I made for the Salcedo Art in the Park, together with Studio Bohemia

LIFESAVER

2013 / 167.6 X 106.7 CM

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Small Koi


2014, ACRYLIC on Canvas

Small Koi


2014, ACRYLIC on Canvas

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An acrylic painting I made for the Salcedo Art in the Park, together with Studio Bohemia

SMALL KOI

2014 / 20.3 x 25.4 CM

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Peak Series


2012-2014, ACRYLIC ON WOOD

Peak Series


2012-2014, ACRYLIC ON WOOD

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This series was for a group exhibit called the 'Revolver Show' for My Little Art Place in San Juan City, 2012. All artists were required to paint on round canvases, about 12” in diameter. This literally shaped what I thought would be fun and eye-catching, with the focal point, the eyes, coming from the middle straining outward. Here you can see my love for saturated colors and patterns such as bird feathers.

AT THE PEAK / PEEKING / PEAKING (CLOCKWISE FROM TOP) 

2014 / 2012 / 2012 / 30.4 X 30.4 CM each (30.4 CM IN DIAMETER)

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Remembering Baguio's 182


2014, Oil and Acrylic

on Canvas

Remembering Baguio's 182


2014, Oil and Acrylic

on Canvas

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"Remembering Baguio's 182" is an oil and acrylic painting I made as an ode to 182 pine trees that were cut down in the mountain province, because a large department store chain in the Philippines, SM ShoeMart, wanted to make room for a new wing and parking lot. It’s just like the lyric in the song: "They paved paradise to put up a parking lot." I wanted the sky to look like it was on fire to represent the enraged Baguio residents, and those who still feel passionate about protecting the environment.

REMEMBERING BAGUIO'S 182

2014 / 59.7 x 49.3 CM