Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Event Coverage: Art Fair Philippines 2013

Get your senses ready to get creativity overload when you drop by Art Fair Philippines (AFP) in Makati. This prestigious event showcased a great visual feast and feature the best of Philippine contemporary art in a unique setting – a first for art exhibitions in the Philippines.

You can find Art Fair Philippines at the 6th level of The Link, a carpark located in the newly redeveloped Ayala Center. It was amazing how the venue was transformed into a vibrant art boutique by no less than world-famous Filipino designer Kenneth Cobonpue. During the by-invitation only preview last night, art lovers, collectors, and enthusiasts were treated to a unique and multi-sensory experience.

My hubby with THE Kenneth Cobonpue
I was personally overwhelmed looking at hundreds of beautiful art pieces that were spread out across the vast area. Aside from being graced by the presence of well-known celebrities and personalities, the AFP served as the center stage where names familiar to followers of the Philippine art scene, stalwarts of regional art auctions, as well as promising art prodigies showed their work in all types of media.

My favorite piece
The exhibition was jam-packed with some of the best and most distinct examples of Philippine contemporary art as presented by 24 of the most forward-thinking galleries and art groups that were chosen for their carefully edited and specially curated shows. Among these were Art Informal, Blanc, Boston Gallery, CANVAS, Finale Art Gallery, Galleria Duemila, Manila Contemporary, MO Space, Silverlens, Tin-Aw Gallery, The Drawing Room, and West Gallery. Featured artists include Ronald Ventura, Elmer Borlongan, Emmanuel Garibay, Don Salubayba, and Mark Justiniani.

One particular interest was “Asphalt,” a rambling installation from renowned kinetic sculptor Gabriel Barredo.

Upon entering, one would also notice the specially commissioned reception desk, created entirely of iconic San Miguel crates by artist Norberto “Peewee” Roldan, Jr., which was amazing!

Makati is considered by many as the point of convergence of the arts since it has a large concentration of galleries, institutions, and artistic practice. So it’s perfectly logical that it hosts the Philippines’ grandest exhibition of contemporary art.

The city is filled with urban art, a collective term used to describe paintings, drawings, sculpture, ceramics, and installations, depicting city life. You can see these from the Arturo Luz sculptures at the Ayala Triangle Gardens to Eduardo Castrillo’s pieces in RCBC and Impy Pilapil’s work in Washington SyCip Park.

To make art more accessible to everyone, people can have a personalized tour of artistic discovery by joining the Urban Art Project of the “Make it Happen, Make it Makati” campaign which was launched alongside the AFP. Art enthusiasts can follow a map where selected spaces near The Link carpark and its environs were marked and filled with a diverse spectrum of creative and masterful sculpture and art installations by leading contemporary Filipino visual artists. The exhibit runs from February 7 to 28, 2013.

Apart from Luz and Castrillo, other artists participating in the Urban Art Project include Charlie Co (Tower One and Exchange Plaza), Ronald Ventura (Glorietta 3 Park), Mark Justiniani (Glorietta Activity Center), Impy Pilapil (Washington Sycip Park), Leeroy New (Pedestrian Walkway), and Acid House (Ayala Museum Fa├žade).

When you pass by the Dela Rosa Elevated Walkways and Underpass Art Gallery in Legazpi and Sedeno, make sure to also stop awhile to admire the works of Dexter Fernandez, Rai Cruz, KooKoo Ramos, Qudo, Triskaideka, Jood, and other graffiti artists.

To further show its commitment to support local artists, AFP will be launching the Philippine Art Awards, a platform to recognize and exhibit the works of established and emerging local artists to reach a wide audience. Stay tuned to AFP’s next project, “Art in the Park” which will open at the Jaime C. Velasquez Park on March 16, 2013.

Keep updated on upcoming events and attractions by logging on to, like the Make It Makati Facebook page, and follow @MakeItMakati on Twitter. Also check out Art Philippines’ Facebook and Twitter pages @artfairph.

To see more photos of the amazing artworks displayed at the AFP, please visit this blog’s album on Facebook.

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