7 Filipino art pieces at Art Stage Singapore 2015

Duffie Hufana Osental

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7 Filipino art pieces at Art Stage Singapore 2015
Filipino artists were well represented at the recently concluded art fair in Singapore

SINGAPORE – Southeast Asia’s biggest art fair, held at the Marina Bay Sands from January 22 to 25, was the flagship event of Singapore’s Art Week, and Filipino artists were well-represented among the 152 galleries that participated in this occasion. 

CHANDELIERS. A version of Singapore artist Suzann Victor's 'Swinging Chandeliers,' from her installation at the National Museum of Singapore. Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental

The fifth edition also featured specially-curated exhibits at the Southeast Asian Platform, where leading artists from Southeast Asia were invited to submit works – and an installation by Filipino Yason Banal garnered a lot of attention for its multi-sensory approach.

YASON BANAL. These are details from Yason Banal's installation at the Southeast Asian Platforms segment of Art Stage. Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental
DETAILS. Yason Banal's work was said to be multi-sensory. Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental
Aside from Banal’s work, we’ll also focus on some of the more interesting individual pieces from Philippine artists at this event. 
Rom Villaseran – ‘The Birth of Giants’ at Galerie Stephanie
THE BIRTH OF GIANTS. Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental
THE BIRTH OF GIANTS. Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental
Rom Villaseran is an emerging artist whose exhibit at Art Stage, titled Imagined Artefacts, was his first outside of the Philippines. The centerpiece of the exhibit was part of Forbes’ 10 Must-see Works at Art Stage Singapore, and true enough, Dragonfly really showcased the artist’s outstanding grasp of detail. The lightboxes he brought were no less impressive and The Birth of Giants showed his experimental side.
Acrylic paint was applied to individual acrylic slides, and the resulting collection looked like Villaseran was comparing the creation of a star with the act of cellular mitosis. I liked the vision and creativity of the approach, and the lighted background really brought out the details of the artwork. (READ: 15 photos: Art Fair Philippines 2015)
THE MARK OF AN ARTIST. Rom Villaseran in his exhibit. Photos by Duffie Hufana Osentall
Eugenia Alcaide – ‘Self Portrait’ series at Art Informal 
OF THE SELF. This is from Eugenia Alcaide's 'Self-portrait' series. Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental
Ginny Alcaide continues her series of layered silkscreens at the Art Informal booth, but this time, the  subject is herself. Larger works take the idea of self-portraits and turn them into haunting experiences – as if she were still in the process of completing herself.
The works are delicate and vulnerable, but powerfully engaging. At the same time, I was impressed by the undoubtedly excruciating technique that the artist used to create these works.
REFLECTION. Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental    
Olivia D’Aboville – ‘Ocean’ at Altro Mondo
CLEAR BLUE WATER. This is Olivia D'Aboville's "Ocean." Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental
Filipino-French artist Olivia D’Aboville is known for incorporating textile techniques in her projects – whether they’re visual art pieces or furniture designs. And as an avid diver, she frequently takes inspiration from the sea and ocean.
So it’s no surprise that Ocean is perhaps one of her more representative works. A relief of blue textile waves of different shades comes forth from the flat white canvas. While not as startling as her three-dimensional works and installations, Ocean manages to capture the ebb and flow of its subject in a more traditional manner.  
Renato Habulan – ‘Translacion’ at Galerie Sogan & Art
SKULLS. This is Renato Habulan's 'Translacion.' Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental
A Singapore gallery, Galerie Sogan & Art exhibited works by both Social Realist figure Renato Habulan and his son, Guerrero. But it was the elder Habulan’s work that really stood out.
Similar to the artist’s show with Alfredo Esquillo at UP’s Vargas Museum, Habulan’s Translacion was a full installation of wooden santos fronting an installation featuring Plastic skulls dipped in enamel and wax were hung attached to nylon cords hung on the ceiling.
The entire exhibition recalled a reverse-caroza procession. The original installation was envisioned to be much larger, but was limited by the space of the booth. Still, it was a great example of the piousness of the Filipino and the pervasiveness of the Church in everyday Philippine life.
TRANSLACION. Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental
Raffy Napay – ‘Sacred’ at Artesan Gallery
Artesan Gallery is a Singapore art space that was founded by Roberta Dans, the daughter of noted Philippine artist and art educator Araceli Dans.
For Art Stage, they exhibited the works of Raffy Napay, who is known for using wool and cotton to weave out ethereal imagery. Sacred is a fine example of his technique, setting the white silhouette of a couple against the colorful backdrop of organic forms and foliage. It is a delicate piece that is wholly enhanced by Napay’s signature technique. 
 BEAUTY IN COLOR. The delicate beauty of Napay's 'Sacred' is seen here. Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental
Wawi Navarroza – ‘Tierra Salvaje’ series at the Southeast Asian Platform for Silverlens 
Photographer Wawi Navarroza negotiates the meaning of outdoor landscapes and combines them with their natural material elements. Each work in this series is divided between a printed photograph of a location and an abstract composition from material gathered from a variety of places.
The whole composition is then re-photographed, printed on archival paper, and displayed underneath acrylic sheets. The resulting series is heavily nuanced, thoughtful, and subtly introspective. 
SCAPES. Wawi Navarroza's landscapes are seen here. Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental
Rodel Tapaya – ‘The Mastermind Alliance’ at Arndt
A signature Tapaya piece if ever there was one, The Mastermind Alliance is a darkly brooding composition that combines both contemporary and folk imagery. 
COLORS, COLORS, COLORS. Rodel Tapaya's piece is called 'The Mastermind Alliance.' Photos by Duffie Hufana Osental
With images culled from the artist’s own memory and experiences, this work reflects the current development of one of the most prolific Philippine artists today. – Rappler.com

Duffie Hufana Osental is a Palanca Award-winning art writer and editor. He is currently the Editor-in-Chief of Art+ (Contemporary Art Philippines) Magazine.

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