Against the Current: Contemporary Social Realist Art in the Philippines

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CreatingSPACE Inc. (Creating Sustainable Practices in Artistic and Cultural Endeavors Inc.) unveils Against the Current: Contemporary Social Realist Art in the Philippines on August 31, 7:00pm at vMeme Contemporary Art Gallery at 61 Visayas Avenue, Quezon City. Scheduled to run from August 31 to September 28, 2013, Against the Current is the pilot show for a year-round series of exhibitions in various museums, art centers and cultural institutions to gather seasoned and emerging Filipino artists from different fields of practice.

Bearing a character that is social and political, Philippine Social Realism (SR) stemmed from particular moments in the country’s history founded on conflicts and struggles. From the late nineteenth century propaganda movement continuing to the twentieth century with the American Occupation, the Commonwealth and the Second World War, and the Marcos era in the 70s and 80s where it is closely tied to, Social Realist works have come to mark the social, political and economic circumstances of the times when they were created. Defined by Alice Guillermo as “art which exposes the true conditions of society, as based on the artist’s keen observations of reality and proffers alternatives for human betterment”, SR works in principle are always contemporary, articulating realities of the moments they were conceived from, espousing aspirations for change. Against the Current continues this tradition and brings together artists and works conveying recurring Philippine social problems of poverty, gender, race, identity, human rights violations, diaspora and also present issues of virtual violence, trauma, including space and the environment.

Featuring the works of Ali Aldaba, Cris Antonio, Adjani Arumpac, Pablo Baen Santos, Caña, Urai Carlos, Rene Cuvos, Crisanto De Leon, Boyet De Mesa, Ferdinand Doctolero, Neil Doloricon, Crown Dolot, Federico Dominguez, Jethro Ecal, Jeffrey Erencio, Avie Felix, Resty Flores, Alee Garibay, Nina Garibay, Jonathan Joven, Dibayn Leaño, Little Wing Luna, Vim Nadera, Renan Ortiz, J Pacena II, Nawruz Paguidopon, Ernie Patricio, Paul Val Peña, Marcelo Quezon, Alma Quinto, Iggy Rodriguez, Jose Tence Ruiz, Don Salubayba, Jo A.Santos, Edgar Talusan Fernadez, Kermit Tesoro, Jake Vamenta, Francisco Verano and Veejay Villafranca, the exhibit is an exploration of Social Realism in contemporary times, showing a spectrum of forms, subjects and media. It attempts to trace and locate SR now while at the same time provide space for inquiries and discourses on how SR has come to be viewed in the present and perhaps hint to its future.

CreatingSPACE Inc. is a non-stock, non-profit organization founded by a group of artists, educators and cultural workers for the public interest of creating sustainable initiatives. It spearheads various programs that aim to develop critical practices in culture and arts which at the same time address the needs of underserved communities.

Against the Current is also aimed to raise funds for TuKLASan Center, a shelter for street children, and Free Renante Gamara Movement. The exhibit opening will be preceded by a film showing and launch of the project’s website at 6:00 pm. For more information, call 975-0052 or 502-2578

visit the event page in Facebook here

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