15 October 2009 to 12 February 2010
3/F, South Wing Gallery
In line with its aim to strengthen the network among art and cultural institutions, the UP Vargas Museum opens Persistent Visions, an exhibition co-organized with the National University of Singapore (NUS) Museum, on 15 October 2009 at the 3/F South Wing Gallery. The exhibition features the video installation by London-based Singaporean artist Erika Tan, to be exhibited simultaneously at the NUS Museum, and selected materials from the UP Vargas Museum art and library collections.
Drawing from amateur videos deposited at the British Empire & Commonwealth Museum, Tan’s installation work presents a moving imagery of various British colonizing missions in the East and explores the concept of the colonial archive as a site of contestation and power. Materials from the UP Vargas Museum relate the Philippine colonial experience to the video. Photographs of American soldiers and officials serve as vivid journals of the American civilizing project in the Philippines and offer a glimpse of how a colonial power represents itself through its own gaze to reinforce their role in the Orient. Two paintings from the art collection elaborate on the complex relationship between the bearer and object of the gaze in visual representations. Juan Luna’s Picnic in Normandy projects the gaze toward the colonizers, and illustrates the colonized native’s fascination with idyllic life in the West. Day Begins by Vicente Alvarez Dizon presents an image of the Philippines during the Japanese Occupation when Pax Americana was disrupted and a dawn of an East Asia sphere would be ordained.
Exhibition runs until 12 February 2010. For more information, you may contact the UP Vargas Museum at 928-1927 (direct line), 981-8500 local 4024 (UP trunkline), 929-1925 (fax), or send an email to email@example.com. You may also visit the Museum’s official website at http://www.vargasmuseum.org.