Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Featured Artist | Doktor Karayom




With Doktor Karayom’s show, “3 Hours” still up at the gallery, get to know the artist known mostly for his bizarre sculptures.

From the unapologetically phallic to the downright weird, Doktor Karayom is a 26-year old sculptor who hails from Cavite whose work pushes the boundaries of the shocking and strange.


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Ako po si Doktor Karayom, 26 anyos, taga pasay city. Nagsimula yung paggawa ko ng sculpture dahil gustong gusto ko yung mga art toys na nakikita ko sa Vinyl on Vinyl, Secret Fresh at tsaka sa internet, tapos naisip ko na gumawa din ako ng sariling line ko ng toys kahit maliit lang. Nung nabuo ko yung GRADE 3 TOY nalaman ko na gusto ko pala mag ukit at mag hulma kaya sinubukan kong gumawa ng medyo malaki hanggang sa lifesize na. Masayang masaya ako pag nakikita ko yung mga drawings ko na nagiging totoo. Yung tipong nahahawakan ko na sya at hindi lang sya nakaguhit sa papel.






Raw, real, life, horror, drama.

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Yan siguro yung sangkap ng kung ano yung ginagawa ko ngayon, base pa din sa paligid at sa pakiramdam tapos ay wala akong pakialam kung malinis. Gusto ko natural lang. Kung madumihan madumihan, kung masira masisira.
Para sa akin mas may karakter ang hindi perpekto.






Nagsisimula yung proseso ko palagi kapag wala akong ginagawa. Yung nakahilata lang o normal na naglalakad o bumabyahe. Kahit nasa banyo sabay boom! Bigla bigla na lang may papasok sa isip na concept tapos dahan dahan ko na tong hinihimay kung ano ba ito, bakit ko naisip yun, mga karagdagang impormasyun at ideya tapos ayun diretso na drawing, o sculpt at production, pero habang gumagalaw ako sa paggawa eh tuloy tuloy pa din yung paghihimay ko ng concept na yun hanggang sa maging solid sya. Kasabay ng pagtapos ko ng paggawa ng pisikal eh tapos ko din yung sa isip ko.

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Sa paligid ako kumukuha ng inspirasyon, sa mga kaibigan ko, sa mga lugar na napupuntahan ko,
sa mga gamit na ginagamit ko, sa mga napapanood at naririnig, sa mga nakakain, sa mga naasusuot,
sa mga naiisip kong katangisip, sa lahat lahat na ginagalawan ng tao sa mundong ibabaw.






Yung creative influence ko ay sila na nagmulat sa akin kung paano ba lumikha, mangarap at maging mabuting tao.

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Para sa akin yung greatest achievement ko ay yung mabuhay ako sa buhay na dati ay pinapangarap ko lang at maging kaibigan yung mga iniidolo kong tao.





Para sa lahat ng gustong maging successful sa anu mang creative field, wag ka tumigil sa paghahanap ng mga bagay na nagpapasaya sayo.

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Spirit animal?

Philippine cockroach




Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Featured Artist | Neil Dela Cruz




With Neil Dela Cruz’s show, “However” coming up this Thursday on March 30, we thought it would be great to feature the man behind the paintings.

Neil Dela Cruz is a 30-something painter from La Union, now based in the Metro. Known for his muted abstract works that possesses both movement and stillness, Dela Cruz has been doing art for more than a decade. He describes himself as a trial-and-error historian instead of the stereotypical artist-as-perfectionist, viewing his work not as masterpieces but as abstract data to be collected: art as artifact, proof of life.


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Tell us about yourself, who you are as an individual and how you've reached the place you are at now.

Ako, laking probinsya ako. Nakipagsapalaran lang din ako dito sa Metro 8 years ago hanggang ngayon gawa ng impluwensya na unti-unti kong nakikilala yung sarili ko simula noong "nagpakamatay" yung tatay ko sa probinsya 15 years ago. 16 years old ako noon that time noong nawala sya. Naging motivation ko yung moment na yon para magpursige bilang isang tao o bilang isang artist. In a way, naging therapy ko yung art. Music, film, painting, atbp. Malaking factor ito dahil para sakin siya ang naging reversal sa mga pangyayari. Ayoko na damdamin lahat ng nakaraan at malunod nalang. Palagi nalang ako gagawa ng art. Susundin ko nalang kung anong meron akong energy para dito na lumakas yung loob ko. Bottomline naging dialogue ko siya bilang challenge o lesson na naging shield ko din para sa mga di natin maiwasang hindi magagandang pangyayari. Nagkaroon ako ng dahilan para mamili uli kung saan ako papunta. So yun yung pinanghahawakan ko hanggang nagyon. In a good way yung background ko rin yung nag push sakin para gawin ang lahat ng ito.





Describe your style in 5 words.

Controlled, chaos, structured, yes or no. 


How did you come about working in this style?

In terms of style, loose lang din. Laging nagsisimula sa observation kung anong available na information tapos from there nagiging playground ko na siya psychologically na pwedeng mailagay na studies sa pyesa. Parang Yes or No lang din yung approach. Minsan confident yung idea, minsan naman okay ang happy accident, pero minsan hindi talaga, so parang yun na yung sign ng mistakes na pwede pang remedyohan at ibalik sa direction. Laging ganon yung sitwasyon lately.




Describe a typical “work” day or tell us about your creative process.

Yung naging proseso ko is initial reaction pa din ng ilalagay sa piyesa, shapes, lines, pattern, at kulay na available agad. Parang yung konsepto sa pagpinta ng "pwede o hindi" "On and Off" "balanse ba o hindi" "Yes or No" parang binary narin yung takbo sa utak ko habang ginagawa ang trabaho laging patanong yung pahid at composition, maaaring "Go ba o Stop muna o tapos na?" kung ano yung instant na maaccess na pwedeng playground sa pag create doon ako naglalaro.



Where do you find inspiration? 

Yung inspiration sa akin kutob ko. Wala naman syang boundary as long as napapakiramdaman ko yung isang bagay or situation. Mapa-nature, urban, conversations, o discoures. Pakiramdam parin sya.





Who are your creative influences? 

Mga taong lumalaban parin sa buhay matalo man o manalo.



What, in your opinion, is your greatest achievement?

Greatest achievement is pagiging malaya. Iba yung nabibigay ng freedom. Kalayaang lumikha





Any advice to those trying to “make it” in creative fields?

Sa creative fields? Wala siguro ako sa posisyon para sagutin ito pero since lahat naman tayo may choice na gawin kung ano yung pinaka gusto nating gawin sa buhay. Parang kailan pa natin gagawin itong mga gusto natin? Pag 80 years old na tayo? Hindi sya madali talaga pero kutob ko worth it naman yung byahe as long as mahal natin yung ginagawa natin.



Guilty pleasure?

Beep Street na track ng Squarepusher


What's Coming Up This Thursday, March 30, 2017


Don't miss Karayom's "3 Hours", and Neil Dela Cruz's "However" this coming Thursday, March 30, 2017! Doors open at 6pm. See you there!





Monday, February 27, 2017

A Look Back at Art Fair Philippines


Last February 16 to 19, Art Fair Philippines has once again colored the concrete alleys of the Link parking lot. 

Peppered with paintings and artworks in every corner from the metro’s top galleries, the carpark was a vivid display of what the Philippine art scene had to offer. Bright, bustling, filled to the brim and a little chaotic. 

Among the slew of galleries, Vinyl on Vinyl had a booth at the shoulder of the 6th floor. These were just some of the highlights:



Street artist, Dr. Karayom’s eccentric display was a hard one to miss, with two
massive peculiar creatures set against a screaming yellow backdrop with the words ‘Gusto ko ng tinapay’ bannered across and a piece of loaf nestled in between them. But despite the display’s comedy and quirk, underneath it lay a deeper meaning. Based on a bread from Quezon called Pinagong, which is an anagram for Panginoon, the piece was a social commentary on man’s relationship with God and our tendencies to place ourselves on a pedestal higher than Him. Nanay, tatay, gusto ko ng tinapay. Ate, kuya, gusto ko ng kape… On the other hand, the two creatures, with hands at the ready to play the familiar Filipino nursery rhyme, was a representation of man’s insatiable thirst for more; how bread, how faith, how God, never seems to be quite enough anymore.

At the corner of the booth, bursting through a crack in the ceiling was a pair of legs dangling from the waist down. Plenty ominous, yet strangely alluring, one can’t help but take a closer look. Dennis Bato’s piece was one with a dark narrative behind it. ‘Paglutang’ is a visual depiction of the light-headed feeling of depression, much like a man floating up into a dark and sinister cloud.


Moving on from the dark and the sinister to the comfort of a familiar memory, Pinky Urmaza brought a hint of disheveled nostalgia with her mixed media collages. Inspired by childhood memories and remnants of a life in hindsight, Urmaza burned, tore, and marked her way into breathing new life into objects once lost and discarded.

On the other end of the booth, the faint sound of music finds its way to curious ears. The source: a small television prompted on corner of the floor, showing a video of a record being painted by a man and his record player. The culprit: Gerry Tan. Armed with a bottle of paint, Tan maneuvers the pigments as the record spins on the player. The evidence hung on the wall. Nine records, all distinct from each other, rings of bright colors melting into each layer, showing that music can also be a feast for the eyes.

Renz Bautista on the other hand, surpasses his own demise in his ‘Last Masterpiece’. The 72-piece behemoth was made in the span of three months, with each piece done in a day. Each block display’s Bautista’s trademark: layers of color, texture, pattern and graphic elements melded together with realistic forms to create a chaotic fluidity. 



Speaking of behemoths, nothing gets quite as big as a collaboration between Manuel Ocampo and Jigger Cruz. The two juggernauts come together to create two pieces that are larger than life, pieces that melds together two generations and mixes the best of both styles.

Miguel Borja once again weaves his brushes to create a textured abstracted whiplash of paint and color. Inspired by what he found after mixing a few hues in his mixing palette, what came out were magnetic figures formed in pigment.

It can be said that all good things come in threes, and Reen Barrera’s ‘Oh la la’ pieces are no exception. Three dolls, meticulously handcrafted and carved from wood, rest on a shelf above three paintings, one to accompany each doll. Inspired by his father’s expression at points of either anger or amusement, ‘Oh la la’ is a colorful fantastical world with an imaginary set of genderless beings. 


These were just some of the highlights from what was a successful run at this year’s Art Fair Philippines. The Vinyl on Vinyl booth had everything from surreal sculptures to contemporary abstractions and featured 47 artists in total. A tough act to follow but a worthy undertaking for next year’s AFP.

Until then, see you at the gallery!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Values by Rai Cruz and Gabby Tiongson


The absence of meaning in art is a rare occurrence. A brush stroke is never empty, a shade hardly hollow. Behind the seemingly uncalculated curations is a strong undertow. 

Values are the muses that fuel the human drive and dictate the human creativity. It is the subconscious influence, the North Star that guides the process of an artist and, ultimately, the artist themselves. Art is a direct reflection of the things we hold dear, the things that matter to us, and, at times, the vanishing remnants of values of an era almost forgot, fossils of a value-centric ideal, both simultaneously disappearing and clawing to be remembered at the sprint of the present.

With a divine chaos of color and grit, reminiscent of both pop tart aesthetics and textured memories, Gabby Tiongson and Rai Cruz's "Values" goes back to basics and gets down to what really matters.

Ugly Truth by Chalk Zaldivar


The facade of politeness for the sake of false harmony is put under scrutiny in Chalk Zaldivar's latest series UGLY TRUTH. He presents a satirical take on the forbidden territories of insult and anger in a non-confrontational society such as ours. Sensitivity to negative comments is a common characteristic for humans. The use of niceties and to walk around eggshells to spare another's feeling has become an expectation, if not a requirement.

Criticizing the lack of straightforwardness and also to vent some of his personal frustrations and irritations, he employs exaggerated imagery. For instance, being fat or having overly active sweat glands turn into points of focus that the artist blows up in infinite proportions with the use of his signature style. To receive the full effect of his premise, he pairs each of the pieces equally witty and audacious titles. Taking the idea from stand-up comedians Louis CK, Bill Burr and Ricky Gervais, he exhibits a refreshingly candid and direct approach in expressing his grievances.

He includes a self-portrait to the series, in admittance of his participation in the ridiculousness of this truthfully egoistical habit. Highlighting his own flaws and insecurities, the artist doesn’t spare himself from being part of his own joke.

Zaldivar remains brave and unapologetic in the crassness and the deliberate lack of depth. In protest of people who are oblivious to their own shallowness, he presents the premise that perhaps it is okay to be so. And that it is good, if not even healthy, to release and admit the tension rather than internalize for the sake of political correctness.

Talking Dollars Dub Smash by David Griggs


TALKING DOLLARS DUB SMASH mixes iconography from Griggs’ fascination with the Wild West with Horror and with his own irrational thoughts. What we get is an eclectic yet democratic collection of paintings that seems to harness the pure primal element of painting. Griggs, being Australian by birth is talking in Dollars although he really should be talking in Kings. Being a direct ancestor of a British convict convicted of buggery in 1822 and sent to Van Diemen’s Land. Griggs uses what he calls “this irrelevant trivia of my origin” as a way to completely ignore “the current trends of making work about ones identity, I find it very silly” Although the fact of its mention can allow us to think that Griggs is indeed confronting his identity, or lack of his care towards it. Either way TALKING DOLLARS DUB SMASH gives us a glimpse into Griggs’ strange world where dub smashing to Hip Hop, painting cow skulls one day then painting penises the next does make one wonder.