ArtFairPH 2019: a visual treat

Photographs by Wig Tysmans

Nothing is coincidental. One plan fell through, but several others took its place. These were bound to happen: a contract ironed out with a client, a reunion with an long-time friend, visiting family, a trip to Baguio to sate a food craving, catching up with an artist and acquiring her art books, nodding to a sought-after art piece to add to the collection, and discovering how talented the Pinoy artists are at the Art Fair Philippines 2019.

None of the above was planned. It just presented itself. Filling the days that was originally intended for something else. All I can say is thank you, God, thank you, Universe, for making it all happen.


Behold A City by Ryan Villamiel

(Right) A Taste of Sin from Anton del Castillo’s Inferno series; (Left) A piece from the Deeper Silence series by Sid Natividad

Forest for the Trees by Christina Quisumbing Ramilo


I’m quite detached from the Manila art scene. The country is oozing with talent and ArtFairPH schooled me on it. It was my first time to attend this 2013-established event. I call it an art buffet spread across four levels of The Link parking space that has been transformed into exhibition area. There was a good serving from every art genre: modern, classic, realism, pop art paintings; sculptures; photography; installations; etc.


(Left) Piece by Lao Lian Ben; (Right) Consequence. An installation using 1000 resin (human) by Dennis Bato

Cheap medicine by Oscar Villamiel

A Stitch in Time. An interactive installation by David Medalla


I was feeding my senses in a frenzy like I can hibernate for a season or two. Absorption was difficult but what I did was scan each of the 52 galleries (35 from the Philippines and 16 international galleries from Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Vietnam and Taiwan) from a distance and approached the ones that appealed to me.


Reversible Rotation- Continuous, Blank in White. Digital work by TeamLab

Three Women Drinking by Fernando Botero


Untitled by Yunizar

(Left) Wind by Yohei Yama; (Right) Homage to Boudelaire by Sanso

Walk on the Water Surface. Folding screen by Yuta Ikehara

Works by international artists like Botero, Kusama, Team Lab were shown along our country’s best like Orlina, Westendorp, Olazo, BenCab, and many more.


Ramon Orlina’s glass sculpture



Five Finger Mountain Hainan by Betsy Westendorp

(Left) Door by Ang Kiukok; (Right) Faith by Olan Ventura

Diaphonous by Romulo Olazo


If I had a fat wallet, I would take home the ones I loved. Until that time happens, I was lucky to be up close with the pieces no matter how quick it was. I’m looking forward to the next exhibition.



Everything, Everywhere, Everyone by Olivia D’Aboville

Inferno, Purgatorio, Paradiso by Ian Fabros


For travel stories, visit
Email me at


Also published in the SunStar Davao newspaper