Art, Exhibit, North Wing Gallery (Landing), South Wing Gallery

Pabula / Fables | Drawings by Elmer Borlongan

Borlongan shows illustrations of fables at UP Vargas Museum

E-VITE_revisedIn 1992 to 1993, writer and poet Hilario Francia embarked on a translation project of Aesop’s fables from English to Filipino. The work of illustrating the tales eventually fell to a young Elmer Borlongan, on fellow artist Egai Fernandez’s recommendation. The drawings are currently on display at the 3rd floor Galleries of the Vargas Museum in the University of the Philippines – Diliman Campus, show titled: Pabula/Fables.

Borlongan, in the first few illustrations, used poster color on black paper, imitating wood engravings, but Francia had reservations on the style. Borlongan thus shifted to charcoal pencil, better capturing light and shadow, and giving life to the animal characters. Francia submitted photocopies of Borlongan’s work to the newspaper, Manila Chronicle, which then published one fable with an accompanying artwork every Sunday. But the decision to submit only reproductions of the illustrations has proved to be blessing in disguise – thanks to Francia, Borlongan was able to keep the complete set of original drawings intact.

There is something about fables – these short fictional stories, typically with animals as characters and imparting a moral – that speak to us. The way that the animals are portrayed – given life and human voices, sometimes speaking even more wisely and profoundly than us – is amusing. Their silliness and rashness, too, make for either funny or thrilling short stories. But perhaps, what fables are able to most successfully do is to hand us a mirror to ourselves to reveal our own folly and animal nature.

Pabula/Fables revisits Borlongan’s charcoal pencil drawings with fresh adaptations and translations by Rhandee Garlitos. They will also be published by CANVAS as a children’s book titled The Cat and the Bat – and Other Fables.

Exhibit runs at the 3rd floor Galleries of the Vargas Museum, University of the Philippines – Diliman, from October 23 to November 8, 2013. For more information, email info@canvas.ph or call/text 0917 306 4175.

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About Jorge B. Vargas Museum

It aims to preserve its collection donated by Jorge B. Vargas and conducts research, exhibitions, publications, and educational programs. The Vargas Museum and Filipiniana Research Center houses a museum, archives, and library devoted to the Philippine history, art, and culture from the late 19th century until the post-war era. Its main beneficiaries are students, faculty, researchers and scholars of the Philippines and Asia.

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>upgrade | Homo sapiens sapiens | Yan Abeledo is running at the 3F Galleries until 27 October 2017. For tour inquiries and requests, please send a message to vargasmuseum@gmail.com. The object featured here is part of Abeledo's installation titled "Progenitors." The artist used discarded laboratory materials in some of his pieces for the show. #videoart #installation #medicalequipment #micropipettetubes #plastic #glitch Green Go Home
Tomas Vu and Rirkrit Tiravanija with Buen Abrigo, Mike Adrao, Renz Lee, Gabby Nazareno, Archie Oclos, Iggy Rodriguez, and Jo Tanierla
Opening reception: 13 Oct (Friday) at 4pm
runs until 18 Nov 
1F Galleries

Described as “social sculpture,” the project dwells on, magnifies, and renders the gesture of protest looming, urgent, and lively in current time and present political life. Conceived by collaborators Tomas Vu and Rirkrit Tiravanija, it has been organized in Colombia, the United States, and Spain. It consists of found images on newsprint which are pasted directly onto the walls of the site and interacting with graffiti text with which it shares pictorial space. Inflected by the charged term “gringo” that reels off the title when it is read, the exhibition evokes the history of foreign interventions and the resistances against them worldwide. According to Vu and Tiravanija, “the provocation inherent in Green Go Home is positioned against the subtle underlying subtext of U.S. interventions, and colonialist attitudes, towards its neighbors in Latin American from Mexico southwards: an antagonism that has cost many lives and much strife. In the imagery itself, the presence of each character-from films to music to personalities of resistance-reveals itself to the viewer as addressing the condition of the graffiti text. The grid holds up the statement and reinforces the layers of interpretation, readings, and misunderstandings. Green Go Homeis meant to be a wall of resisters, and of resistance.” This year, Green Go Home goes to UP Vargas Museum. Through collaborations with contemporary Filipino artists, images of recent protest actions in the Philippines will be drawn on the walls of the Vargas as the exhibition progresses. The exhibit seeks to review our notions of history by contributing to a specific history of protest through interactions with the audience. The Vargas develops a timeline of protests to be accompanied by discussions as an integral part of the exhibition. Mid-month opening at the 1F Galleries: "Green Go Home" project by Tomas Vu and Rirkrit Tiravanija with Buen Abrigo, Mike Adrao, Renz Lee, Gabby Nazareno, Archie Oclos, Iggy Rodriguez and Jo Tanierla on 13 October, Friday at 6pm. Exhibition will run until 18 November.

Regular viewing at 3F Galleries: Yan Abeledo's ">upgrade | Home sapiens sapiens" until 27 October 2017

For group tour bookings, please e-mail us at vargasmuseum@gmail.com @pamquinto on Roldan's "Erehes" and "Salvahe" 
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