art fairs

‘Phygital’ art, augmented reality take centerstage at ManilART 2022

Andrea Ebdane
‘Phygital’ art, augmented reality take centerstage at ManilART 2022

ART FAIR. ManilART runs until October 23.

Courtesy of ManilART

The highly anticipated fair is back with groundbreaking art and technology

MANILA, Philippines – Get in line, art enthusiasts! This year’s ManilART – the longest-running visual art fair in the Philippines – gives a glimpse into the future, putting special emphasis on “phygital” art (a term for art that has both physical and digital counterparts) and new media. 

Now in its 14th year, the fair opened on Wednesday, October 19, at the SMX Convention Center in SM Aura in Taguig City.

In line with their effort to highlight art’s position within the technological developments of the current century, the fair partnered with cryptocurrency platform Binance to launch NFT Manila with the goal of “[bridging] the gap between digital and traditional spaces.”

Featuring works by artists such as Romulo Galicano, Ramon Orlina, and Bell Sison, the exhibit uses augmented reality by rendering and programming 3D-modeled sculptures to be “superimposed on reality.” This creates an “enhanced view” that allows the art to subtly come alive outside the confines of the frame. 

ManilART also launched virtual galleries that permit viewers to interact with a digital simulation of an art gallery environment.

Photo by Andrea Ebdane/Rappler

Another highlight of the art fair is an interactive installation by German artists Juliana and Andrey Vrady. Entitled “Joy United” and described as a “dialogue between humans and technology,” the exhibition invites fairgoers to have their emotions detected by computer sensors, who run these by software codes and generate them into art via artificial intelligence. What emerges is a projection of different colors and patterns corresponding to the person’s detected moods.

Photo by Andrea Ebdane/Rappler

ManilART also features both well-known and up-and-coming artists who specialize in traditional art mediums. The Annual Sculpture Review features the works of Anna Orlina in her gallery debut. Taking after her father Ramon Orlina, Anna’s highly anticipated display showcases her take on her family’s glass working legacy.

Photo by Andrea Ebdane/Rappler

Galerie Artes displays standout paintings and terracotta sculptures from expressionist artist Cezar Arro, who is famous for his signature medley of different colors and strokes. 

Photo by Andrea Ebdane/ Rappler

Another standout is Galerie du Soleil’s display of carabao skulls intricately carved with patterns from Northern Luzon, crafted by the famed Danny Rayos del Sol. 

Photo by Andrea Ebdane/ Rappler

Aside from the main exhibition at SM Aura, ManilART is also holding satellite exhibitions through regional shows in Davao, Batangas, Tarlac, Quezon, Bohol, and Rizal. 

The participating galleries are 371 Art Space, AC 388, Annual Sculpture Review, Art For Space, Artes Orientes, AT Art Gallery, Dry Brush, Espacio Manila, Galerie Artes, Galerie Du Soleil, Galerie Francesca, Galerie Raphael, Galleria Nicolas, G9 Online, Gallery Nine, Historia Arts, M Gallery MNL, Museo de Pacis, Pugad ni Art, Renaissance Gallery, The Artologist, Village Art Gallery, and Ysobel Art Gallery. 

ManilART will run until Sunday, October 23. Tickets can still be purchased at Ticketbooth. –

Andrea Ebdane is a Rappler intern.

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