“Art Lives Here” Joebau at Modeka
- ART LIVES HERE
- Solo exhibition by Joebau
- 22 January to 12 February 2022
- Modeka Creative Space, Warehouse 20A La Fuerza 1, 2241 Don Chino Roces Avenue, Makati City
In a way, anything that is, is called a thing. So also works of art are things, as even the abstract, conceptual, or ambient have form, sensorial or otherwise. But sincere reflection notes that they are different from ornaments, equipment or ordinary tools. Though works of art may be perceived as inanimate, one might find that they are activated in the ecosystem which carries them—the artist as creator, the audience as participant, and the space it is placed into being as the context of experience. That they are created and experienced consciously, they exist into being and take each indelible mark from their unique placements, thus continuously co-created and acquiring life.
Gathering mixed media paintings, installation, and participatory work, conceptual artist JoeBau explores the connections between the objectivity of form and conceptual associations of being-ness, hinting at degrees of production, circulation, and authorship. Approaching art-production as a dynamic exercise of assemblage and engagement, the artist opens an alternative attitude towards works of art not merely as “work”, but rather as “working” art– prompting intellectual associations amongst mixed media, and integrating quotidian objects to non-linear processes of contemporary possibility.
If the “working” art is considerably living, one asks “Where does it live?” and perhaps “How does it remain alive?” The questions suppose a particular materiality bound by space and time as to live is primarily to be bound in objective reality. Yet the artist’s exhibition of works connote that the created are remembered not only by their spatial occurrences, but also their belonging. As they take space, they make a home in their conceptions, presentations, and circulations. The artist, his tools, the gallery, art printed in books, the autonomous audience, and even the acquiring collector might allow the work to exist in physical spaces at a time, but indeed it lives beyond its placements.
Joebau invokes the local word “tahanan” to describe the idea that art lives “here”. “Tahanan” is from tahan, the Filipino word for home. Etymologically speaking, the word originally meant a place of peace– it is not merely a place of habitation, dwelling, or abode. The artist, gallery, and audience thus are invited to make-home with the works of art in extending the notion of place in that each participant might be allowed agency in the construction of the works’ being: we shape the existence of things in any place we leave a mark. At home, more than the place is the peace.
Text and photos courtesy of Modeka Art.