Artist Vin Quilop does not merely paint landscapes; he paints stories.
Returning from his exhibition abroad, he brings with him charming works depicting monumental edifices that stand as marks that identify the city, Manila. These structures—as they aged and changed through time—bear witness to the unraveling of the history that we share: narratives of submission, anxiety and collapse, and those of success, love and redemption.
Apart from that, the exhibition, which happens to be his first in Manila, attempts to surface the tiny crevices and gaps within the city—the moments that slip in between, and things that are oft taken for granted. But he does so, not by relying solely on his own take on things, but by also attempting to solicit stories from those situated within the spaces he visits. In the process, he seeks to nuance the way his eyes view the city and how his hand renders it, discovering Manila anew. Mundane as they are, they build up, and subsequently, form the contours of what Manila is.
The artist recognizes the tentativeness of the images he presents. Certainly, one will not know a space enough. But tentative as they are, these works act as prompts for the viewer to continue the artist’s exploration. The exhibition allots ample space in between the paintings for viewers to share memories, feelings and stories that are elicited by the images rendered by the artist. These, as they congeal, further builds firmer pictures of what Manila is: the place, the city, our home.
– L. Lugue, Curator