writings, projects and exhibitions of Clarissa Chikiamco

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Reflections: End Frame Video Art Project 3: Present

I am curating the third edition of the Philippine video art festival my friends -Rica Estrada, Tenten Mina - and I initiated and did in 2006 and 2007 as a project for our sometimes active non-profit organization Visual Pond. After a hiatus of how many years, the third edition is a new format for End Frame Video Art Project. I chose to abolish the call for entries because, while it was a good opportunity to learn of others who do video and was more democratic (even if entries passed through a selection committee), the resulting exhibition was a mixed bag. In a criticism of our own project, I felt it lacked making a statement, cluttered with so many things. In retrospect, regardless of quality, each work suffered from a "mish mash" context. It was good for these works to be seen and to be able to seen in so many different reiterations by people of different backgrounds (artists, filmmakers, students). However, whatever strong point each work could make was lost or weakened by being amongst other works saying different things.

When I returned from Australia in late 2009, Rica urged us to do a third edition, saying so many people asked about End Frame while I was away. I was hesitant but considered the possibility based on conditions of changing the format. At first, I wanted to do a small group exhibition based on a particular theme. I was not one who believed that an event needs to be bigger each time next time around (and that bigger means better). Yet, while I was doing research on ideas for the show, I realized that I needed to do so much more research on artists and their video works here. I felt a little strange about subjugating artists and their works under a theme for a group show when I still had more to learn. Perhaps for the future but for now, I had more to learn.

So I thought about devising a format which would allow each artist to speak in his/her own context. The festival then would be a series of solo exhibitions of artists who've worked with video and would present a new video work. Working with each artist would also provide the necessary avenues for research (or, at the very least, identification of these avenues). But of course, there are still questions - which artists? How many? There was also the issue of the manageability and duration of the project.

Since the full line-up has yet to be announced and I'm still in the planning phase, I will write more on this next time. I can say though for now that I have decided to keep a private journal documenting my thoughts on this project as it is staged to 2012. And it is being launched this Saturday, 15 January, 7 pm with Tad Ermitaño's first solo exhibition at Pablo Gallery in Fort Bonifacio. Tad uses projections to make a site-specific work responsive to Pablo's two rooms and the stairway in between them.

I have gone back to some conversations I had with Tad in 2009 when I was writing a paper on him for my media art/cinema class (which I eventually revised to present at the Second Philippine Art Studies conference in February 2010). I plan to edit these conversations and put it in the End Frame 3 catalogue which will be released at the end of the project, to be available in online platforms like Kindle or the ipad.

My research continues as I leave next month for my residency at the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, researching on their video art collection. I also have a project in Korea after that but I will be back still in time for our humid Manila summers. I will though continue to update throughout.

Press release on End Frame 3 and Tad's show below:

End Frame Video Art Project 3: Present
, a Philippine video art festival, commences this month as the third edition and new format of the video art festival which took place in 2006 and 2007. Presented by Visual Pond, the theme Present refers to the current project’s focus on selected Philippine contemporary artists’ practices in video art. Throughout the festival, each artist stages a show presenting new video work in various venues from January 2011 to January 2012.

The festival proudly launches with Passage, a solo exhibition by Tad Ermitaño, opening on January 15 at Pablo Gallery, Fort Bonifacio. A site-specific work responsive to the two rooms of Pablo and the stairs between them, Passage utilizes multiple projections and video mapping technology in a crossover of fairy tales and science fiction. Ermitaño, who has studied philosophy, biology and filmmaking, has participated in several local and international group exhibitions and film festivals, including the 2002 videoart.mov, the 2004 Hong Kong International Film Festival, the 2006 Ogaki Biennale, the 2007 Dime a Dozen at Lopez Museum, the 2008 Inter-society of Electronic Arts juried exhibition and recently, the Hear to Ear exhibition of Fete dela Wsk. Passage marks the first solo exhibition of this media artist, running until 29 January 2011 with a closing talk by the artist at 5:30 pm.

Pablo Gallery, located at C-11 South of Market Condominium, 11th corner 26th Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig, is open Tuesday to Saturday from 12 noon to 7:00 pm, tel. no. (632) 506-0602. Other confirmed artists presenting new works for End Frame 3 include Manny Montelibano, Claro Ramirez, Kiri Dalena and Kaloy Olavides with the full schedule and line-up to be announced soon. For inquiries on the project, call +63917-5357955 or email visualpond@gmail.com. End Frame Video Art Project 3: Present is curated by Clarissa Chikiamco; Passage is with thanks to Green Papaya Art Projects.

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