My strongest influence has been growing up in the multicultural yet proudly nationalistic environment of the Philippines. Filipino “borloloy”, a facet of Filipino culture of lavish decorations, has been a key element of my aesthetic as I admire its redundancy, intricacy and inclusion of Filipino history, culture and attitude. My background in graphic design, commercial design, and painting has led me to explore repeat pattern making for textile design. These patterns investigate Asian repeat patterns using modern techniques. After graduation I intend to develop a career as a commercial graphic and textile designer.
I grew up with a natural curiosity of foreign cultures and traditions having been surrounded by an international environment since early childhood. In addition to my upbringing in the Philippines, I spent summers in Hawai’i where I was born. Around locals adorned with traditional Polynesian tattoos there I came to appreciate the beauty and history. I connected their aesthetic of bold, black, geometric, abstract and figurative tattoos to my relationship with other Asian design. In preserving their ethnic culture and relate them with Filipino culture. Overt nationalism has been a point of interest for me because I am fascinated by the strength of old cultures. From early on, these experiences and aesthetics nurtured an admiration for imagery related to specific ethnic groups, traditions, and subcultures— traditional handicrafts, pop-culture and architecture, prison tattoos, gang culture, and tribal and religious rituals.
These various interests have directed my work to silk-screening hand drawn images and computer manipulated repeat patterns. I construct the patterns using traditional designs and make them contemporary—abstracting its image, colour, material or appropriation. Oriental vs. occidental and contemporary vs. old is what I see in Filipino society today where we celebrate our urban development, nationalism and history. The collection I am developing can be seen as a proposal for patterns. I explore substrates and printing materials that are not readily useable but after the process of printing is where I find a completed final image. These accumulated interests influence my explorations and development of my identity as a Filipino artist.