BEDKO: Art and COVID

Highly acclaimed visual artist, Edbon Sevilleno, shocks the public with his out of this world creative concept for his show at the opening of DASUN, a group exhibition at the Art District in Mandalagan, Bacolod City. This exhibition is also in celebration of the 30th year of Visayas Islands Visual Arts Exhibition and Conference or VIVA ExCon, the Visayas-wide biennale which started in 1990.

Bed of Dreams

These past few months of quarantine, Maestro Edbon, had kept snapshots on his phone (and in his head) of his daughters lying in their bedrooms while browsing through their smartphones. An image or habit that has become a norm in the time of quarantine, hence the inspiration for the show’s title: BEDKO.

From that imagery, it dawned on him that when one is in isolation, the mind of a human being never wants to be isolated or restrained. It craves to imagine, it continues to create, it wants to communicate. It wants to travel to places. Places and universes even the physical body couldn’t wander about.

When the coronavirus pandemic hit the hardest and city borders were controlled, we paused, some stopped, and some unfortunately succumbed to the virus. It shocked humanity. It brought changes, very drastic changes in our jobs, our plans, our ongoing activities—our dreams. No matter what manner of coping one did, it is important that we have reacted; and, whether we reacted well or not, here’s hoping that one did what one had to do.

The Assemblage

At the centre of Edbon Sevilleno’s The Black Room / Studio 57, is the exhibit’s star, the “bed of dreams” (or bed of ideas, howsoever you want to interpret it). Surrounding the bed are different works from past to present: The Obreros Series, Collages and Montages, Kalye Art Series, and new works and installations conceived during the quarantine period.

Crazy Poor Asians

The “Obreros: Mga Balatyagun para sa Mamumugon” is featured in commemoration of its first launch on May 1, 2010 (Labor Day). A brilliant way to revisit the show from ten years ago which paid tribute to the farmers and their everyday struggles. After over a decade, let us ask ourselves what has changed in the plight of our farmers? Are they still living in poverty while the hacienderos have become crazier and richer?

Lagaw-lagaw, Pinta-pinta

Edbon Sevilleno is known for his Kalye Art. He is always inspired in the exploration of the everyday life on the streets or kalye, be it at the Bacolod Public Plaza, Binondo St. in Manila, or some spice market in the Emirates. Included in this series are paintings of houses from the ’30s and how different they look at the present time. It’s interesting to know that the wooden framings used in these paintings are remnants from the same subjects/houses.

The new installations are inspired by the coronavirus quarantine protocols. Liquor bans, lockdowns and police/military visibility on checkpoints, border controls, are all evident on these works. What’s exciting is the artist’s 57-page coffee table book that is still in progress. It’s called, “Riit”, which can be translated as something eerie or spooky.

Visit Edbon Sevilleno’s BEDKO: Sadto|Subong|Kag Dasun Exhibition at The Black Room / Studio 57, Art District, Mandalagan, Bacolod City. The exhibit runs from November 6, 2020 – January 6, 2021.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EdbonSevillenoArt

FEATURED ARTIST: El Maestro Edbon Sevilleno

A true-blue Negrense, Edbon Sevilleno, grew up in the quiet town of Saravia in Negros Occidental, Philippines. In his senior year at St. Joseph’s Academy, that was when he met our brother Emil. He later on pursued to study Fine Arts at La Consolacion College and then the rest is history. They have been friends for almost four decades now and have been in touch with each other since. They make it a point to meet up whenever both their time and availability permit.

Just a few weeks ago, we had a great pleasure of meeting Manong Edbon and his doting wife, Chen, in Manila. Although we only spent a very limited time with them, we were able to get to know them more. Manong Edbon even showed us images of some of his works from his mobile phone. His artworks come in various forms and medium—from comic strips, illustrations, portraits, sketches, and, of course, paintings.

Here are just some of our favourites:

Ambon sa Binondo Watercolour on Paper 53 x 73 cm Edbon Sevilleno 2015

© Edbon Sevilleno Ambon sa Binondo (Drizzle in Binondo), 2015 Watercolour on Paper 53cm x 73cm

Diniwid Beach Boracay 30 x 40 cm Plein Air © Edbon Sevilleno 2014

© Edbon Sevilleno Diniwid Beach Boracay, 2014 Plein Air 30cm x 40cm

Galing Milling Season Coffee Stain & Mascovado © Edbon Sevilleno 2012

© Edbon Sevilleno Galing (Milling Season), 2012 Coffee Stain & Mascovado

Isang Kahig... Watercolor on W&N Artist WC Paper 300 gm 55x75 cm © Edbon Sevilleno 2014

© Edbon Sevilleno Isang Kahig…, 2014 Watercolour on W&N Artist WC Paper 300g 55cm x 75cm

© Edbon Sevilleno Taksim Tram, 2015 Watercolour on Sugar Cane Art Paper 36cm x 48cm

© Edbon Sevilleno Taksim Tram, 2015 Watercolour on Sugar Cane Art Paper 36cm x 48cm

Kabo (Chief) © Edbon Sevilleno 2014

© Edbon Sevilleno Kabo (Chief), 2014

Landong sa akon dalanon Shadows on my path 36 x 48 cm Watercolour on Lana Sugar Cane Paper 280 gsm © Edbon Sevilleno 2015

© Edbon Sevilleno Landong sa akon dalanon (Shadows on my path), 2015 Watercolour on Lana Sugar Cane Paper 280g 36cm x 48cm

Qadeem Jeddah 60 X 45 cm Watercolor on 140 lb WC Paper © Edbon Sevilleno 2015 Scanned Version

© Edbon Sevilleno Qadeem Jeddah, 2015 Watercolour on 140lb WC Paper Scanned Version 60cm x 45cm

Tay Kapuy (Dad is Tired) 23 x 32 cm Watercolor © Edbon Sevilleno 2016

© Edbon Sevilleno Tay Kapuy (Dad is Tired), 2016 Watercolour 23 cm x 32 cm

This multi-awarded artist is now based in the Middle East where he works as a Creative Director at a multinational advertising and branding agency. With several one-man-shows and group exhibitions in his portfolio, he takes pride in giving back to the community, especially to his roots—Negros Occidental province.

During his annual vacation in his hometown, he would conduct Master Classes in Bacolod City. These hands-on workshops aim to teach young artists and even those who wanted to start to learn how to paint. This gesture of giving back and sharing his talent is truly admirable; and since it is innate in him, he would occasionally post bits and pieces of tips and tutorials on his Facebook Page.

While Manong Edbon humbly describes himself as “a prolific art nomad,” he is very well-respected, too, by his peers not just for his artistry but also for his kindness and humility. His works were featured in various art exhibitions abroad, and, in his homeland, The Philippines.

See more of his amazing works on these links: sinkosiete.deviantart.com; fineartamerica.com/profiles/edbon-sevilleno

Author’s Note: All images used with permission from the featured artist.

Water to Fire – Ode to Dragon Boat

Water to Fire - Ode to Dragon Boat
Twelve, twenty-two crew – paddle as one,
Carbon fibre or wood–their magic wands;
The drummer starts the beat,
The helm completes the feat;
All twelve, all twenty two–move like one,
Amidst rain, wind or sun.

Together they create poetry,
Lines of resolve and diligence
Stanzas of drills and practices,
Verses of pain and patience,
Perseverance in rhythmic metres,
To a song of dexterity.

Steady focus on starts.
Breathe hard, breathe in silence.

Are you ready?
Attention.
GO!

Kick-start solid strokes of thirty, even forty.
Break apart, destruct fiercely,
Propel the boat. Push!

Two hundred fifty metres or five hundred premier,
Race distance does matter.
With primed muscles for endurance,
Aggression’s aflame,
One and same in goal, in persistence,
Oh, the paddlers, fearless and fierce.

Slice, shave the waters,
Discern the rhyme, feel the sliver,
Progress in synchrony;
Longer reach—be one with water,
Stronger, deeper catch,
Hard and quick to clinch the match.

Breathe properly throughout the course,
Consume the wind, accept its force;
Feel the boat’s glide, retain stability,
In middle of lane, it must remain;
Thru merged force, render the strategy,
Relive the trainings and months of mastery.

Paddle in synchrony, let the dragons fly;
With outstretched hands, make them breathe fire;
Obey its commands, hear them cry—
The dragon boats morph like flames in the sky.

Fire up the blades, burn the waters—
Burn the lakes, bays and rivers;
Whilst near to finish, the stroke rate increases,
Scream! Battle on a millisecond gap;
Claim the victory, return ashore safely,
Prepare to rest, another heat to progress.

‘Tis the journey of brave paddlers,
Soaked in water, cloaked with fire;
Such poetry of synergy,
Teamwork and bravery.

Make More Mistakes and Learn from Them

Make More Mistakes and Learn from Them


To arrive at what one really believes, one must speak through lips different from one’s own.
Oscar Wilde, The Critic as Artist


Lettering Credit: @yourefinevalentine

Lovin’ Oz

The following images were taken from a recent trip to Australia; and, through the prism of this photographer’s eyes, you’d fall in love with the country even more. However, if one hasn’t gone Down Under yet, these fetching images will make you want to go all the more.

Have a glimpse of Australia’s beaches, cafes, facades, buildings, sidewalks, sculptures, flowers, tunnels and graffiti in a rather differently gorgeous light.

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Model: Mabel Grace

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine

Lovin' Oz by Jay Valentine
 


All images used with permission from Photographer © Jay Valentine.