SIXTEEN Filipino artists, four of which are Negrenses, will showcase their art works at the Kalayaan 2023 Art Exhibit dubbed as “Sulong Sining sa 125” at the World Trade Centre, Saeed Hall 1 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates on June 10, 2023.

They are the Filipino Artist Guild in the Emirates, who are a group of diverse visual artists based in UAE.

“We aim to showcase the immense talent and creativity of Filipino artists and to promote and celebrate the rich heritage and artistic expressions of the Filipino culture through visual art. Our platform serves as an avenue for artists to exchange ideas, collaborate, exhibit artworks and foster a supportive environment for artistic growth and development through unity,” artist Cyril Anne Sinay shared.

Sulong Sining sa 125 basically translates to moving forward with art in relation to the 125 years of Philippine independence. It encapsulates the spirit of progress, growth, and development in the realm of art in the Philippines.

“Our title represents the collective drive and passion of Filipino artists in the UAE to push the boundaries, elevate artistic standards and showcase the richness of Philippine art overseas. It also refers to our continuous exploration of various art forms, techniques and themes that reflect the unique cultural heritage, social issues, and personal narratives of Filipino artists,” the artists said.

The artworks chosen based on the theme for this exhibition in order to foster artistic freedom, creativity and diversity of the participating artists. This has allowed the artists with the opportunity to explore their individual inspirations, ideas and artistic expressions without limitations. Our exhibition has a wide range of styles, subjects and techniques which results to a more diverse and eclectic one.

Open themes encourage artists to delve into personal narratives, social issues or experimental concepts that resonate with them and that kind of freedom is what the group wants to showcase in this exhibition.

The participating artists are Alden Velasquez, Alessandro Buhler, Alfonso Baleda, Argie Amancio, Bless Afable-Davey, Carl Bryan Saldivar, Cyril Anne Sinay, Emilia Castus, Irish Ponce, Kharen Tacmo, Nelia Fabia, Paolo Niccolo Bibat, Rex Pangilinan, Rjay Javier, Romeo Robis and Sherizze Sean Acot-Bibat.

Here are some profiles of participating artists with roots in Bacolod City and Negros Occidental Province:

Cyril Anne Sinay

Born and bred in the City of Smiles, Bacolod City, Philippines, Cyril earned her degree in Fine Arts majoring in Industrial Design. Growing up in an artistically inclined family, it was second nature for her to express her passion through her artwork that uses various mediums until she fell in love with quilling art.

It was in 2001 that the artist discovered her passion for paper quilling and paper cutting. Wanting to make a mark that is different from mainstream art, she tried her best to learn its techniques and combined them with her scholastic foundation of fine arts. She joined various exhibits from her home country and conducted workshops and seminars for children and adults in the Philippines and Singapore. She also participated in selected art fairs in the UAE in the past couple of years.

If the artists is not immensely absorbed in her art, you’ll find her enjoying her day job as a graphic and visual artist.

Rjay Javier

Welcome to the captivating realm of Rjay Javier, where imagination and artistry collide to create mesmerizing masterpieces. With a palette of colors at his fingertips and a vision that transcends reality, RJ weaves enchanting stories on canvas. Born with an innate passion for art, RJ discovered his artistic prowess at a young age, exploring various mediums and techniques to bring his imagination to life. From songwriting, film making, and expressive gestures. RJ’s style encompasses a kaleidoscope of emotions, inviting viewers into a world where dreams take shape.

Rj is not just a painter but a filmmaker and musician as well. His art serves as a window to his soul, inviting viewers to experience the depths of his thoughts and emotions. Each stroke of the brush is a chapter in his character journey and a testament to the power of artistic expression.

Sherizze Sean Acot-Bibat

Sherizze Sean Acot-Bibat is a Dubai-based Filipino contemporary artist whose art style focuses on figurative painting. Her works are distinguished by vibrant colors that reflect her mood and personality, creating avenue for storytelling. Her brushwork is both expressive and meticulous, breathing life into her subjects and capturing emotions.

Beyond her artistic pursuits, Sherizze is also a commercial model, journalist, TV presenter and the founder of Don’t Limit Me Campaign for Down Syndrome children. Her artistic influence has been recognized through awards such as Artist Influence of the Year ’22 by WeTel TV Etisalat Channel 336 and a seal of recognition from Guinness World Record holder and Emirati art collector, His Excellency Suhail Muhammad Al Zarooni.

Bless Afable-Davey

Bless Afable-Davey is a contemporary artist, opting to create artworks that somehow give even the smallest spark of inspiration, optimism, gratitude and joy to every person who sees her work, inviting good energy into every space where her artwork will be.

She believes that priming ourselves with these things will help elevate out state of being. And so, it is important for her to express in her work.

The Filipino artists who will participate in the art exhibit.