Philippine arts

Back to the park! What to expect from Art In The Park 2023

Russell Ku

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Back to the park! What to expect from Art In The Park 2023

Art in the Park

Art In The Park 2023 will feature 60 exhibitors, with three special exhibitions from Filipino artists Manny Garibay, Bjorn Calleja, and Kabunyan de Guia

MANILA, Philippines – After four years, Art In The Park is finally returning to its home park at the Jaime Velasquez Park in Makati City on Sunday, March 19. Admission to the event is free. 

Organized by Philippine Art Events, Inc., the “affordable” event hopes to make different forms of art accessible to the general public by gathering “a diverse group of galleries, art schools, independent art spaces, and collectives.” 

For Trickie C. Lopa, one of the event’s organizers, the return of Art In The Park to Makati is a culmination of what her team has learned from the pandemic. 

“Artists will always work and they’ll do it in a different form and that’s what’s great about them. They manage to find ways to adapt their…style. So art will always happen whether in real life or not. Whatever the situation the world is in, there will always be art,” she told Rappler in a press event on March 8. 

It also comes following the success of Art Fair Philippines 2023, an event also organized by Philippine Art Events, as it also returned to its home in Makati. 

This year’s event will feature 60 exhibitors. These exhibitors are listed below in this Instagram post.

Lopa said that organizers of the Art In The Park always try to “bring in something new” to the event not only through the layout, but the artists they wish to highlight. 

“It’s great because of the nature of Art In The Park where it’s a very inclusive, non-intimidating event. Even the artists feel like it’s an event where we can experiment, we can do something new,” she added. 

This year’s event feature three special exhibitions from Filipino social realist painter Manny Garibay, interdisciplinary contemporary artist Bjorn Calleja, and mosaic artist Kabunyan de Guia. 

Garibay is experimenting with dibond aluminum to debut a series of small oil painting works, which “lends his images a ghostly, otherworldly air.”

OIL AND ALUMINUM. Manny Garibay’s “Tatag” (2023) will be displayed as part of the artist’s special exhibit in Art In The Park 2023. The piece is an oil painting on a dibond aluminum canvas. Photo from Art In The Park

Calleja’s “Dirty Hands” showcase is a series of charcoal and graphite portraits and ceramic sculptures to explore the relationship between figuration and abstraction. The artist will also display prototypes of lamps and other functional art pieces. 

MADE BY BJORN. One of the charcoal and graphite portraits created by Bjorn Calleja in 2023, which will be displayed as part of a special exhibit in Art In The Park 2023. Photo from Art In The Park

Meanwhile, De Guia hopes to pay tribute to his brother – the late visual artist and photographer Kidlat who died on March 9, 2022 – through an installation art called “Kidlat Ngayon!!!! Isang taon na paglalakbay as soul” which is a lightning bolt-shaped shrine. 

TRIBUTE TO KIDLAT. Kabunyan de Guia pays tribute to his brother, the late Kidlat, through an installation art “Kidlat Ngayon!!!! Isang taon na paglalakbay as soul” that will serve as a shrine. Photo from Art In The Park

Art In The Park 2023 also hopes to focus on digital art through featuring artists such as Black Eyed Freaks, Bored Punks of Society, Distort Monsters, Mustachioverse By Ownly, and Planktoons through profile picture non-fungible tokens. 

“You get other forms of art now like digital art and then there’s a whole strong community working on digital art and we managed to get them in,” Lopa said. 

The event will be accompanied by music from Soulful Mood. It will also feature flash mob poetry from Titik Poetry interspersed with music from Pundaquit Virtuosi from Casa San Miguel in Zambales. 

Titik Poetry founder Verlin Santos said he hopes to use the opportunity for them to take space in the art world and share how there is a need to use spoken poetry to amplify unheard voices. 

Gusto lang namin buksan na ang spoken word ay hindi lang para sa mga kayang magbayad ng tickets kundi sa mga mas mahahalaga na tao sa community,” he said. 

(We want to open the spoken word space to show that it is not only for those who buy tickets, but it’s also for people in the community who need to be given importance.)

Titik Poetry has worked with persons deprived of liberty and victims of the Marawi siege, among others. 

Like previous years, proceeds from Art In The Park 2023 will benefit the Museum Foundation of the Philippines to preserve and promote the Philippines’ cultural heritage and provide support for the National Museum and other museums in the country.

For more information on Art In The Park 2023, visit www.artinthepark.ph or follow the event’s pages on Facebook and Instagram. – Rappler.com

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Russell Ku

Russell Ku is a digital communications specialist at Rappler who believes in the power of stories to build an empathic society.