In the unique tradition of street art, gritty visuals transform spaces into artistic landmarks and markers of community engagement. It is a language defined by contact, dialogue and exchange. At the heart of which lies human relationships- the inspiration for street artists such as Blic.His art depicts personal and social experiences- a creative response, expanding and collapsing, to the yearning of public spaces and specific sites. Blic brings to life “sub-cities”, familiar and storied public spaces with his street art icon, a hand or a pair of hands, which hints at a language of its own.
Pildera is an obscure enclave in Pasay City. It is no exception to the precarious and dire conditions found in a “megapolis”. It is a stark reminder of neglect, disparity, contradiction and the drama of social change. In Pildera, the economic and social divides are evident not only in the make-up of community dwellings but also amidst the interaction of people living in specific spaces.
Blic painted this wide mural on a wall behind a church and near a basket- ball court by a derelict Padefo. The Padefo, a day-care center turned urban ghetto inhabited by informal settlers, is the focal point of the mural. Beyond the frustrations of urban angst, the mural wistfully illustrates the possibility of rising out of destitution.
Blic’s pair of hands represents two choices- one, the immediate benefit of a “home” for the settlers in the abandoned edifice and the other, the gains from the educational services once provided at the Padefo where some, as Blic notes, “moved on, rather than remained stuck”. Moreover, the mural is a story of survival and adapting to change.
Blic, a self-taught artist, revels in the canvass of the streets and the open. Shaped by face-to-face encounters of the many around him, absorbing the raw and ‘live’ nuances as he draws and, even for that fleeting moment, sharing the identity of that space, Blic creates a visual personal take. And regardless of whether his work is welcomed with curiosity, aversion or indifference, he dedicates his art to the community around. It is the freedom to learn in situ, telling the story in his own way,and encouraging others to reflect and debate that matters most.
Pildera Connect began perchance when Jeetendra Marcelline, an admirer of urban street art and the works of Basquiat, was introduced to Blic on social media. Blic’s talent and icon captured his imagination as did Teo Esguerra’s film photography skills and Lukan Villanueva’s film making ability- inspiring him to produce the exhibit of art, photography and film as part of his efforts to document “fringe” art in the Philippines.
Pildera Connect opens on April 25, 2014, Friday at 6:30PM.
Artist talk on Pildera Connect is on April 26, at 4pm to 5pm; and on May 3, 2014 at 4pm to 5pm.
All at the ArtPrints Alley located at Suite 324 LRI Design Plaza, Nicanor Garcia St., Bel Air II, Makati City.
Exhibit runs until May 3.
For more information, get in touch with Philip Paraan at (+63) 915 205 33 82.