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Breaking New Ground: Meet the Visual Artists Taking Over ARTIPELAGO at Maison&Objet 2024

By Arry Asiddao
January 17, 2024

In a unique showcase at Maison&Objet 2024, the Philippines is set to promote not only the finest Filipino furniture but also the works of 14 emerging artists, each illuminating the cultural nuances found across the archipelago. A portmanteau of the words Art and Archipelago, ARTIPELAGO features visual art pieces and furniture in one exhibition to highlight the country’s dynamic and vibrant design scene.

ARTIPELAGO is curated by Anton R. Mendoza, a Filpino interior designer who has brought together artists, designers, and brands from different parts of the Philippines to create a harmonious union of visual and tactile forms of Philippine art. This fresh take on the Philippine pavilion, which now doubles as an immersive art gallery, demonstrates an interaction between different cultures and styles that reflects the distinctiveness of Filipino art and design.

The exhibit, assembled by Galerie D’Antoine and DF Art Agency, will feature a collection of paintings and artworks from emerging Filipino artists Dino Gabito, Marrie Saplad, Pong Bayog, Demi Padua, Jigger Cruz, Manny Garibay, Cedrick Dela Paz, Arnold Lalongisip, Ciron Seneres, Chino Yulo, Mark Copino, Arce, Bryan Teves, and Jana Benitez. Get to know the artists who will be exhibiting their works at ARTIPELAGO.




In Every Single Bite, A Profound Peace Biscuit II
Oil on canvas
with handmade brass ornate

Arce's artistry blooms in a symphony of textures and hues, with thick layers of acrylic and oil paints being his mediums of choice. His vision reshapes reality, as he approaches each subject from a unique angle, constantly deconstructing and reinventing. A distinctive aspect of his work involves the integration of his own hand-carved corbels, blending structural elements of stone, wood, or metal into his pieces. His canvas, often a hand-woven tapestry from Abra or other Philippine locales, undergoes a transformation through a method of dipping, infusing it with vibrant life. In a daring dance with heat, he bends and melts his frames, reshaping them to his will, a task for which he has crafted special tools.




Acrylic on canvas

Arnold Lalongisip, a burgeoning talent in the realm of contemporary art, hails from Batangas City in the Philippines. Though his academic background is in electrical engineering, he has since plunged into the artistic sphere. As a contemporary realist painter, Lalongisip's creations emerge from an intense visual examination of his environment. His art stands out for its layered meanings, masterfully composed through his exceptional skill in handling paint, and his nuanced understanding of light and shadow, positioning his work as a pinnacle of contemporary realism.




Acrylic on canvas

Bryan Teves, a contemporary Filipino artist from the charming town of Sta. Lucia in Ilocos Sur, has carved a niche for himself in the art world despite facing early financial challenges that prevented him from completing his Fine Arts program at the University of the Philippines Baguio. Undeterred, Teves turned to art competitions, drawing on his passion, determination, and innate artistic skill to forge his path. His dedication paid off with numerous awards, including the prestigious 2012 Grand Prize of Sining PSE (Philippine Stock Exchange) and the 2015 Grand Prize of the Metrobank Art and Design Excellence (MADE). A highlight of his career is his acclaimed work "Sakbibi ng Galak at Tagumpay," which has garnered significant attention.




Ang Karpintero
Acrylic on canvas

Cedrick Dela Paz is an emerging talent in the contemporary art scene, renowned for his unique approach to figurative expressionism. His work poignantly addresses the somber aspects of Filipino life, offering a critical view through the lens of social realism. Dela Paz has a distinctive way of portraying societal issues, often depicting his subjects in unconventional, distorted human forms. His preferred medium is acrylic, and he frequently utilizes multi-panel compositions or polyptychs to convey his messages.




122cm diameter

Chino Yulo has etched his name among the eminent sculptors of contemporary Philippine visual arts, testifying to an unwavering commitment to and continued exploration of his craft. His diverse body of work, spanning various materials including wood, metal, resin, acrylic, and glass, serves as a profound exploration of the natural world's forms, embodying its shapes, silhouettes, and implied movements and rhythms. Orchestrating a visual symphony with his notable materials, Yulo’s works resonate with the wonders of nature and as well as some of the most moving abstract expressions of thought and feeling. At the core of Yulo’s visual philosophy lies the fundamental principles of flow and balance. This philosophy is masterfully reflected in his works, whether they be intricate tabletop pieces or expansive large-scale installations. (Words by Carlomar Arcangel Daoana)




Medium: Straw
152 x 122cm

Ciron Señeres, a Manila-born visual artist, is particularly celebrated for his monochromatic palette and photorealistic depictions of plastic objects, as well as his oil-on-canvas renditions of Metro Manila's urban communities. He graduated with a Fine Arts degree, majoring in advertising from the Technological University of the Philippines. Señeres has showcased his talent in both local and international art scenes, including exhibitions at Art Fair Philippines, Art Fair Tokyo, the Metropolitan Museum, and the Cultural Center of the Philippines.




Island Girls
Acrylic on Canvas

Demi Padua, a creative soul from Calapan, Mindoro Oriental, brings a unique flair to the world of visual arts. His canvas comes alive with mixed media, drawing inspiration from the playful memories of childhood, the boundless realms of imagination, and the vibrant tapestry of daily life. Padua is particularly renowned for weaving Trompe l'oeil, a technique that tricks the eye, into his artistic expressions.




The Modest Embrace
Oil on canvas
60inc x 36inch

Dino Gabito's artistic hallmark is his captivating portrayal of drapes on canvas, a style in which he excels with remarkable flair. His fascination with fabrics and drapery is evident in his work, where each piece is painted with a blend of precision and fluidity, as if the fabrics themselves are performing a graceful dance upon the canvas. Gabito's journey to this unique style was born out of a challenge; he found his traditional figurative painting of real human figures to be a weakness. However, this led him to discover his true passion and strength in the artistic representation of drapery and fabrics.




Tsunami Sky
Acrylic on Canvas

Jana Benitez approaches painting with a fresh, dynamic perspective, constantly reinventing how the medium can encapsulate human energy and joy. Benitez's artistic process is deeply anchored in somatic awareness, fueled by an internal curiosity and a commitment to deep listening and tapping into her innate wisdom. She breathes new life into gestural painting, employing it as a means to delve into and connect with various philosophical and spiritual realms, including Buddhism, Daoism, Christianity, and Tantra. Her work brings a vibrant, personal touch to these ancient teachings, making them relevant and accessible in today's world.

Raised in New York City within a Filipino family, Jana Benitez has nurtured her roots while extending her artistic reach to Maine and Manila. She holds an MFA from Boston University and a BFA from Brown University, graduating Magna Cum Laude.




Oil on canvas

Jigger Cruz's abstract works are known for their bold defiance and defacement. His unique impasto surfaces, with complex layers over traditional masterpieces, challenge the authority of established art. As a color-blind artist, Cruz uniquely interprets color through its textural qualities, bringing a fresh perspective to painting. He views his work as an integrated installation, where both frame and canvas play a crucial role. Beyond their material exploration, his works also engage with significant themes, from the weight of historical narratives to religious contexts, offering insightful commentary on contemporary social and political issues in the Philippines.




Oil on Canvas

Emmanuel "Manny" Garibay, born in 1962 in Kidapawan, North Cotabato, is celebrated as a master artist-storyteller. His canvases are far from the realms of traditional religiosity; instead, they are vibrant narratives of everyday people, whom he elevates to the status of political entities. Garibay's deep-rooted activism shines through in his art, as he captures the essence of ordinary lives and spaces with unfiltered honesty. His works are a form of protest, deliberately eschewing the typical gloss over harsh realities. Garibay is renowned not only for his distinctive expressionist figurative style but also for the profound social and political messages embedded in his works, aligning with the principles of Social Realism.




Oil on Canvas

Mark "Kidlat" Copino, born in 1981, stands out as a dynamic contemporary artist from Cebu, Philippines. After departing from art school, the vibrant streets became his canvas, allowing his art to be admired by a diverse audience. Kidlat, along with his fellow street artists, established two of Cebu's most prominent street art collectives of the era: Ubec Crew and the Junks Collective. Renowned for his unique approach as a stencil artist, he also has a special affinity for incorporating oils into his work. His creations delve into the realms of human psychology, drawing inspiration from his own childhood, the nuances of domestic life, interpersonal relationships, and the journey of self-discovery. Mark Copina masterfully merges photography, printing, and painting to create surreal, imaginative compositions.




Together Forever
Oil on canvas

Marrie Saplad, born in 1984, has emerged as a significant self-taught force in the Philippine contemporary art scene. Her exceptional still-life themes, featuring everyday objects in monochrome, have marked her as an artist of unique vision and style. Beginning in 2017, her initial series skillfully portrayed transparent glass bottles against white backgrounds and linen, reflecting her profound interest in monochromatic themes. A key aspect of Saplad's artistry is her masterful play with black and white, dark and light. Her adept use of shading and light not only adds depth and realism to her subjects but also invokes a sense of contemplation and introspection.




Oil on canvas
48inch x36 inch

Florante Bayog Paghari-on, widely known as Pongbayog, is a master of figurative painting, renowned for his intricate and detailed works that often focus on the human anatomy. One of Pongbayog's signature themes is his depiction of braided women figures or women with their hair in a bun, typically portrayed with their backs turned. These representations are not only a testament to his skill but also a symbol of his artistic identity. The choice to depict women from behind adds a layer of mystery and contemplation, inviting viewers to delve into the stories and emotions that these figures might embody. Self-taught and hailing from South Cotabato, Mindanao, Pongbayog is known for his precision, skill, and deep understanding of his craft. Working predominantly with monochromatic oil paints, he skillfully brings to life the human form and various other subjects, using them as a canvas to express his interpretations of truth and sensibility.

The Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) has partnered with the Office of the First Lady to present ARTIPELAGO, with the shared objective of promoting Philippine art and design. The partnership aims to showcase the artistic diversity of the Philippines to a global audience, with an emphasis on highlighting the country's rich cultural heritage.

The Philippine participation at Maison et Objet 2024 is also in partnership with the DTI Competitiveness and Innovation Group and supported by the Foreign Trade Services Corps and Philippine embassies and consulates in Europe.

Visit the Philippine Pavilion at Maison&Objet, Hall 6: TODAY, F92-G91, Parc des expositions Paris Nord Villepinte, from January 18 to 22, 2024. For more details, you can contact Chiqui Veneracion, the Philippine representative of Maison et Objet at [email protected].

In addition to being featured at the Philippine Pavilion, participating companies will be showcased on MOM, Maison et Objet's digital platform, throughout 2024.

To learn more about the participation, visit

Artist profiles by Galerie D’Antoine and DF Art Agency

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