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Saturday, May 18, 2024

SEAMEO INNOTECH Artists Go Beyond the Local Art Scene with a Traveling Exhibition in Europe

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The diverse talents of an artist collective from SEAMEO INNOTECH extend far beyond the local art scene by showcasing their artworks in Europe.

Carrying the vision of former Education Secretary and SEAMEO INNOTECH Director Leonor Magtolis-Briones to bring to the fore the rich union of technology and the arts, the INNOTECH 13+1 held their first international group exhibition titled “La Mia Mente È in Europa” in Milan, Italy from May 7-12, 2024.

Hosted by the Philippine Consulate in Milan, the exhibition featured works by Ramon Arsenio Acevedo, Nina Ricci Alagao-Flores, Hoche Magtolis Briones, Denes Dasco, Joy Dasco, Jes Evangelista, Karen Fabie-Concepcion, Reymar Gacutan, Carmela Geisert, Jay Lozada, Nesty Angeles Ortiz Jr, Anton Quisumbing, Byron Valenzuela, Myk Velasco, Jefferson Villacruz, Chelony Mercado and former actor Reb Belleza.

Consul General Elmer Cato, SMEG SpA Director Emer Zavaroni and SMEG Philippines President Ton Concepcion graced the opening of the exhibition, along with members of the Filipino and art community in Milan.

In his opening remarks, Consul General Cato underscored the importance of celebrating the cultural heritage of the Philippines through art. “We are honored to host this exhibition in cooperation with the White Room Gallery and SEAMEO INNOTECH. This exhibition celebrates the rich tapestry of Philippine art and culture,” he said.

Surpassing the boundaries of traditional artistic methods, the artist collective showcased an innovative range of artworks by using new mediums and native materials. “The exhibition zooms in on the innate creativity of the Filipinos. From the very traditional rice fields, carabaos grazing the field, bamboo art, the collection has expanded to include all the mental landscapes of our artists,” the exhibition curator, Professor Ruben DF Defeo, said in his welcome remarks.

One of the artworks featured in the exhibition is “Impending Vision” of the famous Banaue Rice Terraces by Jefferson Villacruz. The installation, with screen mesh as the ground, depicts the immersive environment of  virtual reality, highlighting the harmony between humanity and nature, as he emphasized that, “without intervention, such natural wonders might only be accessible virtually in the future.”

Similarly, “Bangka” by Karen Fabie-Concepcion depicts a native fishing vessel used by Filipino fishermen on the aquamarine waters of Palawan.

Mixed media artist Joy Dasco puts the spotlight on a “Kalaw,” also known as the Philippine hornbill, accentuating its unique characteristics and captivating essence.

Meanwhile, multimedia artist Hoche Briones highlighted the integration of technology into his artistic expression, as he presented “Clash,” a watercolor fusion of grid-style squares inspired by years of working with pixels (digital imaging) and spontaneous organic swirls often found in his abstract works.

For more information about the White Room Gallery and their upcoming exhibitions, visit their social media pages or email at si.whiteroomgallery@gmail.com.

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