I had been mesmerized by Ximena Garrido-Leccas´s The Followers which I saw at the Saatchi Gallery early this year. It is a powerful visual smorgasborg of an installation that explores the adverse effects of colonialism and the cult of the dead in native Peru.
Anybody who has grown up in an environment violently battered by social, cultural and religious upheavals can relate to The Followers. I for one, being born in the Philippines, know first-hand the extent of the damage colonialism can make to one´s cultural identity. I mourn for the history of my people that I do not even recall. Ximena´s The Followers brings the symbol of Death as an allegory to a conflicted social history of Peru. I was very lucky to score an interview with Ximena. She talks to me about her art, her inspiration for The Followers and her advocacy for indigenous arts. Read More »
The first time I visited the Saatchi gallery last year, I found some art works too perplexing for my taste. One particular piece was a transparent plastic with spray paint hanging in the gallery room. I understand that not all art works need to be aesthetically pleasing but atleast there should be a conversation on the importance of form over content or vice versa.
Am I too stupid not to see beyond the plastic just hanging in front of my face? When does art start to be something else? I realised I had been too judgmental about Saatchi and decided to give the gallery another go.
Off to Duke of York Square without much high hopes, Saturday was a particularly interesting day to visit the gallery and to hunt down paella off in the food market. Read More »