“Terraforming” Alee Garibay and Delmo at Modeka Creative Space
Words by Alain Zedrick Camiling and Alee Garibay
Home and home-making are two very different things, as artist couple Alee Garibay and Delmo are learning for themselves, and hence the theme for their first two-artist exhibit together. Home is a concept, a constant abstraction, lived in the mind, that either draws one towards it (in nostalgia, or longing for comfort) or repulses ( by triggering complexes from domestic disharmony or childhood trauma).
Home-making on the other hand, is a continuous process. It is the pursuit of creating livable reality – a collective endeavor. One doesn’t make a home by or for oneself, and by extension one doesn’t create life by or for oneself. Through this lens, home-making is closely related to a constant doing or remaking in the everyday which are both shaped by our encounters and the combination of processes.
The idea of home is indicative of complexities rooted from various disciplines such as anthropology, psychology, and philosophy, among others, and made tangible and material through one’s being, actions, and will. Social anthropologist Elia Petridou (2001) talks about home as both “a practice and a combination of processes through which its inhabitants acquire a sense of history and identity”, referencing notions of home as something separate from its physical architecture but not necessarily disconnected from its material world.
In Terraforming, Delmo’s works bridge the idea of dwelling through dynamic commentary on society and lucid contemplations in line with curiosities from the mundane. He unpacks these through interesting pseudo personalities and overtones rooted from ambiguities and complexities of the human interaction including its past and futures. On the other hand, Alee Garibay’s works hinge on customary resonances, immediate surroundings. She tackles life, decay, closures, and continuities examined from quotidian encounters. She encapsulates echoes of intimacies and geniality preserving snapshots of nature and her domestic sphere as windows to ponder and wonder at the visceral, cultural, and ecological nature of existence, among others.
How does one envisage, manifest, and translate the idea of home as something woven into and yet transcendent of the quotidian? Terraforming proposes to reassess home as an extension of the material and conceptual self, and more importantly a lived experience shaped by negotiating identity and belonging, reflections and perceptions, effect and affect, among others.
Home-making is reiterated as an active process in this exhibition, apart from a concept of a nurturing space or context, which tangentially relates to memory or a way to remember interrelated ecologies. It highlights glimpses of the artist’s day-to-day encounters and how they both dissect issues, concerns, and perspectives revolving around spaces and places. Both artists ruminate on and engage interrelated connections across the visceral, the cultural, the artistic, the political, and the social.
A kind of inside joke (Delmo jestingly calls himself a Martian), the exhibition title stems from science fiction indicative of a transformation of a(nother) planet to echo earth – a place potent for nurturing and sustaining life forms. Terraforming is a key collaborative gesture between husband and wife, Delmo and Alee Garibay, which echoes their married life as artists as they explore both process and practice across myriad contexts through varied critical approaches, resonances, and interventions. Doing art is this artist couple’s way of untangling their shared experiences to create order and meaning.
Exhibit runs till June 14, 2022. For more details contact Barbs of Modeka Art Space at email@example.com.