Saturday, November 28, 2020

Filipino Artistry Shines in Singapore Biennale 2019

Posted on Wednesday, 18 December 2019 

21 November 2019 – Singapore’s pre-eminent platform for international dialogue in contemporary art, the Singapore Biennale, is back for its 6th edition starting 22 November 2019 until 22 March 2020. This time, 77 artists and art collectives from Southeast Asia and around the world will be featured under the theme “Every Step in the Right Direction.”

The works, installations and performances of these artists will be showcased around various venues in Singapore, including the National Gallery Singapore, Gillman Barracks, Lasalle College of the Arts, the National Library, and the Asian Civilizations Museum.

Ambassador Joseph Del Mar Yap (rightmost) and First Secretary Gonaranao B. Musor (leftmost) with Prof. Patrick D. Flores, Artistic Director of the 2019 Singapore Biennale. Ambassador Yap congratulated Prof. Flores on this huge honor of shepherding one of the biggest art events in Asia. (Photo: Wilford Will L. Wong)

At the helm of the 2019 Singapore Biennale is Prof. Patrick D. Flores, who serves as Artistic Director. He is a Professor of Art Studies at the University of the Philippines, Curator of the Vargas Museum in Manila, and Adjunct Curator of the National Gallery Singapore.

Part of his curatorial team is another Filipino, Mr. Renan Laru-an, who is a researcher, curator and the Public Engagement and Artistic Formation Coordinator of the Philippine Contemporary Art Network at the Vargas Museum and Filipiniana Research Center.

Among the artworks seen during the exclusive preview of the 2019 Singapore Biennale at the National Gallery Singapore on 19 November 2019 were those of Filipino-American artist Carlos Villa. The many facets of Villa’s artworks and archive that reference his initiatives in cultural work, teaching and curation serve as a broader reflection on modernism and the post-colonial turn in contemporary art among the Pacific diaspora. (Photo: Gonaranao B. Musor)

Among the 77 featured artists and art collectives are many from the Philippines, namely Raymundo Albano, Judy Freya Sibayan, Lani Maestro, Alfonso Ossorio, Gary-Ross Pastrana, Miljohn Ruperto, The Mamitua Saber Project (featuring Mark Sanchez), and Carlos Villa.

Some of the productions of these Filipino artists were made possible through the support of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) and the Office of Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda.

Another Filipino artist featured during the exclusive preview of the 2019 Singapore Biennale at the National Gallery Singapore on 19 November 2019 was that of Manila and New York-based Alfonso Ossorio. A collection of his works, “Congregations,” is characterized by swarms of ornament, fantastic objects from driftwood to rhinestones and glimpses of otherworldly references akin to dreams or triggered by heady imagination. (Photo: Gonaranao B. Musor)

Philippine Ambassador to Singapore Joseph Del Mar Yap and First Secretary Gonaranao B. Musor were treated to a preview of the 2019 Singapore Biennale on 19 November 2019 at the National Gallery Singapore. An opening reception was held with Singapore Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Grace Fu as the guest of honor.

If you will be in Singapore in the next few months (until 22 March 2020), you may wish to check out the schedule, venues and timings through this link: https://www.singaporebiennale.org/pdf/SB2019-ShortGuide.pdf. END