Sunday, December 3, 2017

Celebrating creation: Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

by Melissa Villa-Real Basmayor

The declaration of the name of the pop-up art fair Guibo Mi Yan as a statement of what one can do is bursting with pride. Paradoxically, however, the event did not have any iota of arrogance, and rather a sense of humility, at least to me who was drawn into their unassuming, approachable, and friendly setup at the entrance of Tugawe Cove Café, Robinson’s Place Naga on the afternoon of December 2.

In small tables only large enough to display a handful of zines, art prints, stickers, necklaces, tote bags, keychains, and a plethora of other quirky items, the local artists from Naga City, Camarines Sur, and even Albay, the artists gamely talked about their creative processes, signed their works, and even posed for selfies with fans. While waiting for buyers or in between conversations, some artists took the time to doodle on paper or on their devices. Meantime, others acted as the dutiful social media influencers that they are by posting photos and videos as the event unfolded.

Each artist brought his or her personality into the setup. Isabella Oropesa had miniature easels on her table and a giveaway for those who purchased above a certain price, while Four-Eyed Wonder gave visitors to her table a chance to win her merchandise. Bem Zenit’s table was aglow with fairy lights, illuminating her resin necklaces and rings, and Ryan Jay Avila’s table had a small musical carousel that matched the color palette of his digital illustrations. Karen of Sweet Cheeks brought her two precious children who greeted customers with their adorable smiles and giggles. And apart from having a number of zines, John Leir Castro and Krizzia Esperanza’s table had original paintings whose prices one can decide on, for a minimum of P100. Jasper Gomez and Imagininja had both illustrated zines and prints on show.

In other words, the event was perfectly Instagrammable, and instantly inspiring even for people who claim to have no artistic sense. Not surprisingly, the event drew in not only the expected millennials, but also people from the older crowd. After all, appreciation for art knows no age, especially with the level of skill and creativity the participating artists have, which also included—apart from those already mentioned—  Yvette DucutAnjo Arandela, husband-and-wife team Jay and Ahj Salvosa, and blogger The Indy Miss.

I fervently hope there would be succeeding Guibo Mi Yan pop-up fairs. I would suggest a larger and more conspicuous venue where more artists, from the six provinces of the region can convene. I also urge the government and private organizations to back this project as it supports local makers and furthers arts and culture. Perhaps to attract more to take part in the event, I would also suggest performances by local artists, talks, and demos.

All in all, Guibo Mi Yan was a celebration of Bicolano artistry and craftsmanship, a rare and valuable opportunity for makers and art enthusiasts to come together and engage in conversation. The event supports what is possibly a kind of cosmogony for the digital age, where people with exceptional skills and extraordinary passion participate in the act of creation.

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

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Melissa Villa-Real Basmayor is the Editor-in-Chief of Bicol Standard, the region’s most-read and fastest-growing news source. A former Humanities instructor, her creative works (paintings, illustrations, and poetry) have been part of various visual art exhibits and publications.
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Celebrating creation: Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City

Guibo Mi Yan pop-up art fair in Naga City by Melissa Villa-Real Basmayor The declaration of the name of the pop-up art fair Guibo Mi...