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An Art Immersion Day

Being productive and making my own art has been a challenge lately. This is why this short visit to my alma mater made me feel inspired and left me in awe (of course, nostalgia aside). There was so much going on in the campus and I'm glad I paid a quick visit to really soak in all the art and to fuel my creative juices as well. So here's a quick blog post as a little visual diary that could help you take in the inspiration and motivation that you need.

Museum of Contemporary Arts and Design is located within our campus which is why as a student, I made sure I visited it as much as I can whenever there's a new exhibit. Currently, the exhibit is called The Spectre of Comparison that showcases some works of Lani Maestro and Manuel Ocampo.

A number of benches were scattered around the area and this is called meronmeron by Lani Maestro. Written are random ideas and feelings from different people. I spent my time walking around and reading through some of them. It's surprising when you find a phrase or a word that answers what you need and what you are looking for right now. It brings a weird sense of relief, somehow.

At the mezzanine lies a few books that may be read as you visit the exhibit. This is what I miss the most about my school, the variety of books that they have! The mezzanine also displays three more paintings by Manuel Ocampo and a few more benches from Lani Maestro's meronmeron.

Continuing the mini exploration in the School of Design and Arts campus, we visited this work of art by Doktor Karayom. I believe that this is in partnership with Benilde Center for Campus Art, for the CCP Thirteen Awardees 2018. It's soon to launch and I can't wait to learn more about this particular art installation! 

We didn't let the opportunity come to a waste so we decided to take a few portraits despite the odd lighting. Of course, the photographs won't do justice as to how amazing the place looks. I found myself spending a bit more time as I tried to stare at the different elements in this installation. It is overwhelming at first, but once your eyes get used to it, you'll notice interesting points in the art as a whole.

Entering the fire exit from the fifth floor was a surprise to me. It looked like an entrance to hell, really. And what came into mind was how fear-inducing this will be if ever the emergency exit will be used for actual emergencies. But all in all, definitely worth visiting!

This massive mural is called Bakwit by Archie Oclos. It measures 75 by 225 feet. The term bakwit translates to the word evacuee. This work of art mirrors the experiences of the Lumad community, especially the youth. Below the mural is a paragraph filled with questions that translates to the different questions and stories of the community.

"Bakit kami bababa sa aming tirahan patungo sa kalungsuran? Bakit kami mapapalikas sa aming lupang ninuno? Bakit wala kaming paaralan pang-kolehiyo rito sa kabundukan? Bakit inaagaw sa amin ang aming alagang manok at baboy? Bakit winawasak at inaagaw ang aming pananim? Bakit may kaguluhan? Bakit wala na sina Itay at Inay? Bakit sila pinaslang? Bakit? Bakit kami BAKWIT? ...gusto lang naming makatapos ng pag-aaral at mabuhay."

So that's a day in my alma mater. I really am blessed to graduate from an arts school that really values the arts and uses it to translate modern day problems, especially with all the issues in our country lately. I love how the arts can bring so many stories and emotions from the artist and what message they want to relay to us. This day was really fun and I'm glad I spent some time to soak all this in and just be inspired with all the creative people around me.

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