TWO exhibitions opened last May 5, at Orange Project, one of which had simultaneous openings at the other spaces in the Art District: The White Space Gallery, The Open Space, and Block17 Art Space.
Fotomoto 22: PH organized by Fotomoto PH in collaboration with Orange Project is back in Bacolod for the final installment of “Fotomoto: Home”. This multi-venue shows will feature the complete collection of “Fotomoto: Home” and new work as special exhibitions of Negros-based photographers Aeson Baldevia, Faye Abantao, and John Kimwell Laluma. It was a rainy Friday afternoon, but as Karina Broce-Gonzaga opened the exhibition, ‘despite the rain outside, welcome home’.
A whole-day of talks program followed on May 6, Saturday, given both by founding members and local participating artists.
The season of their exhibition originates in Metro Manila and travels to different regions during its annual cycle.
Now in its second year, FotomotoPH launched “Fotomoto22: Home” with an open call throughout the Philippines and the diaspora. Participants approached the theme of “Home” in response to the collective experience of having emerged from the past few years with new perspectives on our homes, due to prolonged isolation, working and studying from home, migration, displacement, the loss of one’s home or finding a new one.
The sense of home, while tied to places, may also be as abstract as a feeling, relationship, or ritual. The FotomotoPH jury welcomed all cultural, historical, socio-political, and personal narratives captured through the various genres of photo-based works.
In addition to Orange Project, the exhibit is also installed at 3 additional venues within the Bacolod Art District: The White Space Gallery, Block 17 Art Space, and The Open Space. Our multi-venue shows will feature the complete collection of “Fotomoto: Home”, with new work as special exhibitions of Negros-based photographers Aeson Baldevia, Faye Abantao, Frelan Gonzaga x E.S.L Chen and John Kimwell Laluma.
In White Space Gallery, the capsule show brings together the special exhibition series of Jacob Maentz and Katherine Jack, with the work of photojournalist Jes Aznar and a new series from Negros-based artist John Kimwell Laluma.
While Maentz’ series “Homelands” features the varied landscapes around the Philippine archipelago and the indigenous peoples who inhabit them, Jack’s “Palawan Seas” focus on the people of Palawan and their intricate connection with its environment. Aznar’s single work urges us to contemplate on his complex image: an idyllic field being cultivated by a farmer carrying a weapon.
Laluma’s series captures the dramatic night skies of Negros, in places like Mount Kanlaon, San Carlos, Kabankalan, Sipalay and Talisay City. Altogether, their works lay out for us both the immense beauty and innate contradictions that co-exist within the Philippines.
The works in Block 17 Art Space explore the concept of home within our gritty urban environments.
It features the special exhibition series of documentary photographer Jilson Tiu, who chases evening lights around traffic-congested Metro Manila, to portray the daily struggle of going home; the double exposure series of photojournalist Veejay Villafranca, who explores layering and optical effects with building facades and structures, and other photographic work from the Fotomoto nationwide open call that delves into the compound sense of home intrinsic to our complicated, bustling cities.
The Open Space, a two-storey 2-story gallery that hosts workshops, talks, and other programs is a reminder of home, both architecturally and with its goal of cultivating intimate community collaborations.
This is the rationale behind the capsule show. The cyanotypes of Angela Silva, Pinky Urmaza, and Neal Oshima, the ambrotypes of Raena Abella, and the diaristic documentation series of MM Yu are installed together here to celebrate experimentation, continuous learning and close observation of the ordinary objects that surround us.
On the other hand, Distant Travelers, R A Tijing’s solo exhibition, also opened on the second floor of the gallery. Distant Travelers is his series of works illustrating the dangers faced by migrants in seeking greener pastures.
Fotomoto 22: Home is open to the public until June 24, while Distant Travelers’s closing date is yet to be announced. (PR)