SO WHAT happened in the local art scene during the National Art Month (NAM) of February? A lot.

I wonder why February, with Valentine’s Day, was designated as the NAM. Cory Aquino must have see the word “art” in “heart.” But I’d like to think that art is uplifting, a source of joy, and that’s good for the heart. It’s always good to invest in a piece that “sparks joy” and hang it where you can see it all the time.

If you’re in touch with Davao art and in constant lookout for art in the city, then you would know where to turn to. Social media would be a good channel. If you follow the art galleries and artists, then your feed would show what is happening and where it will be. If you’re an ardent follower, or a good friend, then you’d probably have a badge (a Facebook feature) by now or you’d be tagged in all of the coming art shows.

Wouldn’t it be great if all our artists can gather in a one huge place and showcase their art? Like a one-stop-gallery where you can shop for great pieces. It’s like ArtPH in Manila or Mindanao Art in February instead. Like what the Universe would say, “Wish hard enough and it can happen.” That’s what I’m doing.

Until that happens Davao has spaces which celebrate art. Last month, there were four art shows in the city. Morning Light Gallery along Quirino Ave. hosted “Love Sonnets” that featured four artists. The show was only until end of February.

Not to worry, there are three more on-going art exhibits around the city. At Abreeza Mall, always the venue for the Dabawenyo Artist Federation shows, is the “4 x 7 by Eight.” Clearly the theme is the canvas size by the eight participating artists, who presented their own identifying style or genre. Josie Tionko, flowers, Alex Alagon, Dabawenyo human figures and Arnel Villegas, nature in pen and ink, etc. Exhibit runs until March 8.

Art Portal, Gallery for Contemporary Art along Legaspi Street presented “Leap” (2020 is a leap year). The exhibit features the abstract paintings of Rabi Salvacion, Kristina Valencia and Alfred Galvez. This exhibit gives you a chance to let your imagination wander. Don’t look for a meaning, but rather let the pieces speak to you. Exhibit runs until March 20.

The newest gallery to open in the city is TheBauhaus Art Gallery along Doña Vicenta Road in Bajada. It’s a gallery and a learning space. The gallery debuts with “Romance w/ Soil” art exhibit featuring the soil painting of the Talaandig artists from Bukidnon. Soil as a medium presents limited pigments to work with. However, these artists were able to overcome the challenge and created impressive works of arts in earth tones. Exhibit runs until March 12.

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