Legarda: ‘Ties of History’ Featuring ASEAN Artists Opens in Three Museums

August 9, 2018

Senator Loren Legarda today announced that the Ties of History: Art in Southeast Asia has opened its exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Manila on August 8, 2018, exactly 51 years since the signing of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Declaration or the Bangkok Declaration.

The contemporary art exhibition will open at the Yuchengco Museum today, August 9, and at the Vargas Museum on August 10. The exhibition can be seen simultaneously at the three museums until October 6, 2018.

Curated by art historian, scholar, and curator Patrick D. Flores, the exhibition features the works of 10 artists representing each ASEAN member state—Roberto Feleo (Philippines), Amanda Heng (Singapore), Anusapati (Indonesia), Do Hoang Tuong (Vietnam), Chris Chong Chan Fui (Malaysia), Yasmin Jaidin (Brunei), Min Thein Sung (Myanmar), Vuth Lyno (Cambodia), Jedsada Tangtrakulwong (Thailand), Savanhdary Vongpoothorn (Laos).

The project is presented by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) through the Dalubhasaan Para sa Edukasyon sa Sining at Kultura (DESK) with the support of the Office of Senator Loren Legarda.

At the opening of the exhibit at the MET Museum, Legarda, through a message read by MET Museum President Tina Colayco, said, “I am proud of this exhibition, which gathers artists from the ASEAN member states. This is not only a showcase of contemporary art, but is also an attempt to strengthen the ties that bind us.”

“In a world of diverse traditions, various practices, and different beliefs further complicated by current global trends, sometimes even by wrong information and fake news spread rapidly through social media and other modern forms of communication, we must exert greater effort to promote respect and nurture understanding among one another, within our respective nations and within the region,” she added.

Ties of History: Art in Southeast Asia is a survey of contemporary art, on the one hand. On the other, it is a diligent study of a particular practice. The project features three works of each artist from the ASEAN countries. This enables the exhibition to present a more in-depth look into the interests of the artist and allows the audience from different parts of the city to view the exhibition.

For his part, NCCA Chairman Virgilio S. Almario said, “The ten artists who have generously shared with us their works and realities present to us the contemporary ASEAN. There might be no single identity but the everyday stories we live as citizens of ASEAN bind us together.”

He added, “Politics and the economy are important to achieve regional progress but arts and culture will remind us to push for progress that benefits not a few.  ASEAN bounties should be shared by all.”

Legarda, who has given major support for Philippine contemporary art projects, said that the Philippines’ hosting of this exhibit is another laudable initiative to make the country an active and important part of the contemporary art scene in the region and globally.

“I congratulate everyone who has made this exhibition possible and I invite our ASEAN neighbors to continue this art project annually or in the form of a biennial in the same manner by which we host political and economic affairs in ASEAN. Let us make art and culture an integral part of our regional integration so that we may truly be successful in building an ASEAN of ‘One Vision, One Identity, One Community’,” Legarda concluded.