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Unsteady Homes: A Review of Passage III | Alfredo and Isabel Aquilizan

This quarter’s exhibition at the Singapore Art Museum, entitled Odyssey: Navigating Nameless Seas, is dedicated to the selected artists’ explorations of the elements of water bodies, and their historical and contemporary connotations. From being the motherly space where all lifeforms originated to being the ravenous space whose waves consume ships that attempt to cross over, the ocean had always been the beast humans have been attempting to tame and to comprehend. This exhibition aims to be a reflection of humankind’s achievements in this journey of understanding.

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The sole Filipino work in the exhibition, Passage III: Project Another Country by the artist couple Alfredo and Isabel Aquilizan, contributes to the exhibition’s goal by exploring the human experience of movement both at personal and societal levels. Having been relocated outside of the Philippines themselves, the artist couple’s collaborative projects revolve primarily on the topics of diaspora, home, belonging, and the psychological and sociological implications of these movements.

In the installation, cardboard boxes were sculpted in the form of shanty houses, assembled on top of each other while perched on a boat. The large number of made-up houses give the impression that the entire structure is unsteady. Perhaps, it is through this that the artists express the struggles in the process of relocation — the adjustment to a new phase and environment, while carrying along the memories of what was left behind. In addition, the work may also examining how feasible and possible it is to actually transfer what we refer to as our own concept of “home”. manilaartscene_favicon

The exhibit runs from the 4th of June to the 28th of August, 2016 at the Singapore Art Museum along Bras Basah Road, Singapore City.

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