Velada Tomasina

Yesterday, January 25, was the Velada Tomasina in UST wherein students are advised to wear Filipiniana to commemorate UST during its early years. 

I entered UST yesterday knowing that there will be people on their best Filipiniana clothes but I did not expect to feel that I really was transported back in time. I pretty much enjoyed seeing people playing the roles of students during the Spanish Era but the only difference was that there’s technology. It’s quite funny seeing students before having cellphones and cameras. haha.

So yeah, I guess everyone who went to UST yesterday pretty much enjoyed it too. here are my photos.

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Bakit nga ba Rizal ang apelyido ni Jose?

Kung ang tatay ni Jose Rizal at Francisco Mercado at ang kanyang nanay ay Teodora Alonso Realonda, bakit nga ba Rizal ang apelyido ni Jose Rizal? 

Kung ating iisipin, ang dapat na pangalan ni Jose Rizal ay Jose Alonso Realonda Mercado, hindi ba?  Galing sa prominenteng pamilya si Jose Rizal. May sari-saring mga negosyo ang mabuting pamilya. Dahil sa kanilang impluwensiya, naging malapit sa kanila ang isang alkalde mayor at hinirang na bigyan sila ng pangalawang apelyido -  Rizal. Napansin ni Jose na maraming may apelyidong Mercado noong panahon na iyon kaya ay pinili niyang gamitin ang pangalawang apelyidong Rizal.  


Aswang, 2014, ink.

In my motherland, in inangbayan, the supernatural lived as close to me as my skin. This is what I am trying to embody in my pieces.

I chose a woman in a forest as the focal point for Aswang – nothing overtly monstrous about her, so long as one looks politely away from her cache of picked-clean skulls. The image of aswang I grew up with was someone wild, mad, ravenously hungry; monstrous, savage, bestial. Insane, and the furthest thing from beauty in the grime and gore. I counter this with my outcast, calling birds – ghosts – flame spirits – to her hand, perched comfortably on an unearthly tree whose branches are hung with dark moons, weaving magnificent all around her as if mantled by power made visible, reveling in wildness, enchantment, the impossibility of being understood or known. I say: the forest is an intricately woven spell. The forest is cradle and bower and shelter. The forest is an open mouth, waiting, hungry.

This work was made possible by my wonderful Patreon patrons. Thank you so much. This is the kind of art you enable, that you support.