Normal scheduling will resume shortly is an exhibit of collaborative and individual works of contemporary artists Poklong Anading of Manila and Neil Fettling of Melbourne. The exhibit takes into account some of the “arteries,” mostly unnoticed, which make our cities run as well as the things that make it congested.
It is now on display until November 3 at the 4th floor Atrium of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) building, taking up spaces in Bulwagang Fernando Amorsolo (Small Gallery) and Pasilyo Victorio Edades (4F Hallway Gallery).
The two have known each other for seven years already, and have collaborated in the past. This time, the two are tackling the networks and arteries found in urban places and systems we see everyday, and yet have not given much thought of in a poetic perspective.
“The really interesting thing about the collaboration of me and Poklong is, our various works are very different, yet we have a synthesis of interesting similar things.” shares Fettling, “Back in the days, we collaborated exhibitions, I was working at artificial materials into so-called natural environments and Poklong independently, without any conversation, [was also in a similar path].”
Since Normal scheduling will resume shortly is an ensemble of pieces that are meant to highlight the things that flow in the urban systems and the reasons that such flows are being intervened, subjects like the Manila traffic, the Pasig river, and the likes were easily picked up by the two artists.
“I think the start of our conversation also started from the Pasig river, when we were going around the city. We were observing the community along the Pasig river and the train station, which is actually part of the exhibition as well.” explains Poklong Anading.
Here are some of the pieces you'll get to see in the ongoing exhibit:
Inspired by the fences put up along the Manila Bay, one of Poklong’s installations tries to convey how this modernization of the bay protects the seaside from pollution yet it somehow becomes a divider between the people and their environment.
Poklong also shared how he asked random strangers in their houses to bring out a plastic bag and wear it on their heads. The collection of photos, according to Poklong, is a representation of these consumers’ demands and so becomes part of their identities. He also added that other artists also shared their take on this, collecting things that are no longer in use yet taking up space, and turning it into something else.
Fettling also gave notice to the prevalent wearing of masks among people on the streets. He collected these masks to represent the bacteria and viruses that people are protecting themselves from, which in turn, are also the ones created by commuters riding their vehicles.
Another installation from Fettling is a disturbing assemblage of urinal bags while a recording of taxi drivers singing plays in the background. It recounts the artist’s experience when he was struck by an illness while in Manila and he had to go on numerous uncomfortable trips to the hospital. Altogether, the piece also present how people are trying to make situations, such as being stuck in traffic, a bit more bearable.
These and more pieces from the two contemporary artists are now on display at the fourth floor of the Cultural Center of the Philippines, until November 3. Exhibit vieweing hours are from Tuesday to Sunday, 10AM to 6PM, to be extended until 10PM during evening performances at the CCP Main Theater. For more information, you may check out the CCP website or visit their social media pages on Facebook and Instagram.
The Cultural Center of the Philippines is located at Roxas Blvd. cor. Pablo Ocampo Sr. St., CCP Complex, Pasay, Metro Manila.