Browsing through the artwork of Tyang Karyel evokes the childhood pleasure in small things. A single candy, a plastic toy, an old movie. As we grow older it’s a little harder to find joy in these things, but the Cavite artist puts a low brow art spin on things, refreshing their aura. Her pieces are art objects for the everyday fan, often made in cutout shapes or packaged in satchels. “I’m fascinated by cheap, local brands with weird designs and wobbly lines. I especially like product labels and ephemeral stuff,” she tells us. “Everything looks clean, crisp, and shiny these days. It’s too perfect so we forget about the simple stuff.”
Skateboarding. Punk rock. Graffiti. They’re all pretty aggressive subcultures, outlets that allow angry kids to express themselves. And Distort Monsters has been here for all of them since he was little. Whether out in QC on his board during middle school, running around Metro with a can in high school, or penning angsty punk songs all along, it was a way for him to channel his mood into relatively positive ways. And it paid off too, considering that he’s opening his first solo art show this Sunday, courtesy of the good people at Secret Fresh. [Full disclosure: Distort is now part of the Honeycomb team.]
The exhibition is Nada’s fifth solo show, coming off of a hiatus of six years since his fourth. So the title “Homecoming” is fitting, marking his return to the gallery setting. Those familiar with his personal street art style and murals scattered around the San Juan and Quezon City area will be interested to see how his style has evolved. And evolved it has, revealing a secondary meaning to the show’s title: come into the Nada household.
Empty, matte black figures suspended above dust piles in a small, windowless room and a dry faucet on the far end. It’s a bleak scene, one loaded with implications for our future if the world continues on its path. The installation is Dennis Bato‘s “Element Of The Past” show at Vinyl on Vinyl, which opened this week. And although meaning behind this piece of concept art is unclear at first glance, all it takes is a nudging from the artist himself to send its possibilities spiraling. He says it’s about the existence humans might face from the choices we’ve made, specifically the specter of water crises, which Manila only recently suffered through as millions of people faced limited access to water.
Family. It’s the basic unit of human connection, an integral part of existence, the root of one’s identity, usually composed of parents and children in the same household. Most consider the people they were born into and share a bloodline with as their family.
JP Pining knows who’s got a soft spot for their fuzzy little friends. In his second solo show at Secret Fresh, dubbed “Endless Loyalty,” he uses his trademark geometric style to illustrate different breeds of dogs, capturing them in riotous color. JP has a doggo to call his own, who is part of the inspiration behind this show, but another driving force was witnessing how people are changed by forming relationships with their dogs. Any pet lover would know what it’s like, and these bonds were on full display with all the pets running around that night.
Hosted during a scorching Brooklyn summer, “Beyond The Streets” boasts over 100,000 square feet of exclusive collections by more than 150 of the world’s most celebrated street artists and pop artists. Located along the newly luxurious Williamsburg waterfront, the exhibition brings together some of society’s most pervasive mark makers and rule breakers.
Curated by Roger Gastman, “Beyond the Streets NYC” displays how graffiti was born in the streets of New York and Philadelphia during the late ’60s and has grown to take over galleries in the 2010s, blending with a new era of pop art.
The karaoke machine is ubiquitous in Asian life, so what better way to communicate with an audience? Anton Belardo’s new exhibit, The Jellyfish Karaoke, revolves around it. This is the third installment of her ongoing visual diary series Jellyfish Kisses, a playful and experiential searching of complex human emotions.
The paintings and sculptures all circle around Anton’s personal experiences of heartbreak, sadness, pleasure, and joy. Each piece has a karaoke code for a title. Once loaded into the machine, a pop song will play to help the viewer interpret, as well as relate with, the art piece.
Corporate life is not what immediately comes to mind when viewing Grace Period, Tekla Tamoria‘s current solo exhibit at Vinyl on Vinyl. But upon closer inspection, the clues and hints referencing work life in the concrete jungle slowly reveal themselves. Hanging structures made of paper strips resemble tall city buildings. Concrete legs firmly set beneath each lend an authoritative character. The pieces also bring to mind tiny office cubicles and their claustrophobic, trapped feel.
Even the materials Tekla uses are regular office supplies, such as fluorescent sticky labels and filing folders. She skillfully folds, rolls, and weaves these all together to create some truly quirky sculptures.