10 Cool Manila Street Art Spots to Take Your #OOTDs In
Unlike traditional artworks on canvases placed in air-conditioned galleries, street art—from graffiti to murals—is, well, found on the streets. You can see it on gutters, lampposts, demolished walls, parking lots, pavements, and basically anywhere. The pieces are often done late at night, when the police or guards aren't around to reprimand the artist for spray-painting on the walls that say "post no bill." But street art still bears the stigma of being equated with vandalism, which is done with the intention to destruct or damage property. How can something so amazing, like the murals below, be called damaging, right?
True enough, our local street artists prove that art goes beyond art fairs and exhibits, and even building owners, restaurateurs, and cultural agencies have commissioned them to design otherwise bare walls. We round street art pieces that you should be on the lookout for while driving around the Metro. Happy spotting!
- Distort Monsters
BGC Arts Center, Bonifacio Global City
Welcoming you to BGC Arts Center, the newest playground for Filipino artists and lovers of the arts, is a commissioned mural made by Distort Monsters. The profile on Distort Monsters' Instagram page reads, "Making friends with the monsters in my head since 2009." "Garden Grove," however, is a bit different than the usual images of skulls and out-of-this-world creatures, and shows colorful illustrations of succulents, cactus, and other plants.
- Jappy Agoncillo
Street artist Jappy Agoncillo made his mark, literally, somewhere in Marikina through a mural of a funny-looking skull...with ears! You can see it side by side with the trademark spray-painted artworks of Distort Monsters and JP Pining.
Katipunan Street, Marikina City
CHILL, a member of Pilipinas Street Plan, often incorporates geometric shapes in his murals. You can also follow his Instagram featuring pen and ink artworks. He's also into cardboard box assemblage.
- Kookoo Ramos
Kookoo Ramos has invaded Eastwood City with her portrait murals spray-painted on vents and building gates. You can even find her trademark graffiti on kubos and walls in Siargao where she recently spent a fun surfing vacation. The walls of restaurants Wagga Wagga in Ortigasn and Crave Park in Marikina also bear her artworks.
- Lee Salvador
Sgt. Mariano Cemetery, Pasay City
The National Commission on Culture and the Arts collaborated with street artists like Lee Salvador of Cavity Collective to paint murals on the walls of the Pasay City Public Cemetery and Crematorium along Sgt. Mariano Street. His signature painting of hollow faces now stands on the nine-foot high panel, but with more vibrant colors and cutesy images like hearts and paper airplanes.
- Kris Abrigo
Net One Center, Bonifacio Global City
Kris Abrigo is one of the many artists that turned BGC's otherwise plain firewalls, gutters, and parking lots into huge canvasses painted with murals and graffiti during the ArtBGC Mural Festival 2016. "Manpower" on the firewall of a 17-storey commercial structure along 3rd Avenue is his tribute to the labor force of the Philippines.
- Old Haus
La Salle, Greenhills, San Juan City
You may have seen Old Haus' stickers posted all over the city—from an image of an orange peeing dog on the gutter of Robinsons Magnolia to a stenciled spray paint of the word "Why" under the MRT overpass in Shaw Station. The works are very temporary, just the way street art often is.
- Dee Jae Pa'este
Bonifacio High Street, Bonifacio Global City
Aside from murals on the walls, Bonifacio High Street also sports a huge heart sculpture painted by artist Dee Jae Pa'este. It depicts an image of two women with their backs against each other, held together by what seems to be a tree rooted on the musical symbol of a G-clef.
- Nemo Aguila
Urusan, Taguig City
Nemo Aguila can turn anything into an art piece, may it be the board of a basketball ring or a wooden figure of a pigeon for Art in the Park 2017. One of his signature images is that of a three-eyed green blob.
- Ang Gerilya
San Andres Bukid, Manila
Ang Gerilya, an artist's collective formed in 2008, is known for creating artwork inspired by Philippine culture and history, and the five-storey mural "Ang Pinuno" is no different. It features an image of a datu, a leader of an organized, pre-Hispanic Philippine society; a Babaylan spirit-bird; and the words "Sino ang may galing, sipag, tapang, at puso? Siya ang dapat mamuno!" This political piece can be found on the firewall of an apartment building on the corner of San Andres Street and Osmeña Highway, right next to the tracks of the Philippine National Railways, in Manila.
This story originally appeared on Spot.ph.
* Minor edits have been made by the Candymag.com editors.
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First. Pixie dust and paper cuts – these are the first things Wendy knew about Peter Pan. Aurora first met Prince Philip when she was sixteen. Learning how to ride a bike was also a first while I was growing up, but you are probably the first of too many. The first collection of dust and stars; maybe Luna will try to ask, who was your first? I might answer and tell her that it was you.
The first of too many stars in the sky. You are the first of too many fallen leaves during fall – and you will be the most anticipated snowflake as winter comes. A dark path that you can’t see without any light, hence, you were once the moon and there are the stars that shine so bright at night. Are we too early? Or we just really want to be ahead of time? Even in a glimpse, I would like to see the two of us connect as if we can reach the sky. There are other parts of the heavens you have never saw and other oceans you haven’t laid your feet onto – but the constellations will always wait for you. Close your eyes, love, close your eyes. Start counting backward: 5, 4, 3, 2, 1. Count backward until you see the twinkling lights that will guide you to the right path. To the right satellite; to the right person. A first.
There are many firsts – first love, first heartbreak, first sport you played, the first thing you do in the morning, the first thing you remember about the person in front of you. There are a lot. It’s actually up to us how we will consider something as a first. So, Primo, you are already a first of too many.
If you know me, and know me well, I am not the biggest fan of idyllic lifestyles. With a Type A personality, I act immediately upon whatever challenge that needs to be addressed. I actually enjoy keeping my mind preoccupied: doing university work in my favourite cafe then running errands around town, grocery shopping here, updating my accounts there, photocopying documents on the way down the street - all just in time before having a glass of champagne at the bar with my friends come evening.
And so, you could imagine my bewilderment when the next challenge to be faced was an extensive self-quarantine protocol. I didn’t know what to do when my greatest responsibility in this situation was to do nothing at all. My first few attempts to combat my consternation were very much rooted in distraction and imagination. My distractions involved conducting research, writing songs, calling family and friends, filming videos, and eating chocolate! My imaginations and fantasies were centred on travelling, shopping, even clubbing (which I rarely do) for when they find a cure to COVID-19. I did anything and everything that could be considered constructive in order to pass the time, mainly hoping I could just undertake the basic human necessities to survive - that is, eat and sleep the day through - until the next day comes, until the world is closer to becoming a better place, until quarantine ends, until my flight follows through, until I see my family and friends again.
Days in self-isolation and suspended flights turned to weeks and turned to months. By the third extension here in Spain where I study Fashion Business, I had to tell myself this shall be my new normal now, that I was blessed to be healthy, that I was tired of merely existing and missed what it was like to actually live - even if just within four walls. Little by little, I began to find significance in the simple occurrences of the day: the soft glare of the rising sun beaming golden streaks through my bedroom window upon waking up, the fragrance of freshly washed bed sheets that I had painstakingly hung to fit a relatively small clothes rack without crumpling them, the crunch and tanginess of warm toasted bread topped with raspberry marmalade, the buzzing sound of a phone call from home just waiting to be answered, to the caress of a fuzzy sweater to keep warm at night. I realised, “What pleasures to be enjoyed in the pause of slow living!” Through this continued pause, which I loathed at first, I began to appreciate each moment of the day rather than wish it would pass more swiftly, moments I had overlooked so often before the lockdown. I started to find that the challenge of self-isolation was never to pause both the regular routines of life as well as the positive emotions that came with these - as initially, I thought it meant to pause all happiness, so as to withstand a time of endurance in hopes for a better tomorrow, much like a form of delaying gratification. Life is just too fragile these days to delay gratification any further.
Life has paused, but it has not stopped. Believe that like any punctuation mark in a sentence, the pause will provide the right timing of things to take place. Till then, let us not waste our time waiting. Instead, we could be in the moment, seek substance in simplicity (that is, in what we already have), And enjoy the pleasure in pause. “Practice the Pause. When in doubt, pause. When angry, pause. When tired, pause. When stressed, pause. And when you pause, pray.”