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Art Fair Philippines’ Metaverse Brings You To A Virtual Art Alternate Reality

The famed exhibition stages its 2021 edition online for the first time.

Our favorite art exhibit is back—with a whole new different experience to offer, at that! With the ongoing pandemic keeping us from gathering with a crowd, Art Fair Philippines found a way to bring the annual celebration in a much safer space and convenient place: online.


Introducing this year’s Art Fair edition called Metaverse, a collective virtual shared space and alternate reality showcase will bring together a myriad of talents along with their masterpieces for all exhibition goers to enjoy. It’s happening this coming May 6 to 15, and yes—anyone can enter for free.

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For the 2021 Art Fair, 43 local and international exhibitors will grace the event and several online viewing rooms will be staged, offering a more immersive discovery of different creators and art forms.


It includes homegrown names like 1335Mabini, Archivo 1984, Galerie Roberto, Orange Project, Shutterspace Studios, and Silverlens. Meanwhile, global exhibitors include the likes of Art Porters Gallery and Gajah Gallery from Singapore, Kobayashi Gallery and Gallery Kogure from Japan, La Lanta Gallery from Thailand, Galeria Mayoral from Spain, and Primo Marella Gallery from Italy, among others.

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With a focus on digital art, Metaverse invites viewers to their well-presented sections. The ArtFairPH/Projects section, co-curated with Tropical Futures Institute and Narra Art Gallery, will take you from understanding the crypto basics, to buying an Non-Fungible Tokens or NFT, and meeting artists and gallerists that are embedded within the crypto art community.


ArtFairPH/Film, on the other hand, will debut specially-commissioned digital artworks, in line with the exhibit’s focus on digital art. The section, which is developed in partnership with Daata, will showcase digital artworks by new media and contemporary artists Jeremy Couillard and Petra Cortright, and Keiken, a collaborative practice co-founded by artists Tanya Cruz, Hana Omori, and Isabel Ramos.

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The new section, ArtFairPH/Residencies, an artist residency program project in partnership with Bleeding Heart Rum Corporation. The program will select five artists and pair them with art spaces and galleries from different parts of the Philippines, including Manila Observatory in Quezon City, Linangan Art Residency in Alfonzo, Cavite, Emerging Islands in San Juan, La Union, The Orange Project in Bacolod, Negros Occidental, and Barrio Butanding in Puerto Princesa, Palawan. Winners will be presented in next year’s Art Fair.


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For ArtFairPH/Photo, Paris-based Filipino photographer Ding Panganiban will bring to the fair his ambrotype collodion process of developing photographs taken with a vintage camera and printed on glass.


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Of course, no Art Fair is complete without the ArtFairPH/Talks, Open Studios, and Online Tours. The talks will feature daily discussions presented in partnership with the Ateneo Art Gallery, Museum Foundation of the Philippines, and the international publication, Art Review. Meanwhile, the workshops for Open Studios will present live demonstrations and recorded instructionals aimed to give fair visitors hands-on experiences in art-making. Virtual tours will give a look at the singular collection of filmmaker and current Baguio resident, Moira Lang, and go on a studio visit with acclaimed artist Alfredo Equillo.


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Finally, the event is set to present the six winners of the Julius Baer Next Generation Art Prize. As a strong supporter of the arts, Julius Baer recently launched this inaugural competition for Southeast Asian artists, with a focus on the digital image, recognizing it as a medium of the future. The prize rewards the top three winners in two categories: Still Image and Moving Image, with a total of USD60,000 in cash prizes.


And although this year found its home online, the 10 Days of Art is still happening. An installation is planned for Ayala Tower One’s fountain area with live screenings of the selections of ArtFairPH/Film digital artwork.


Excited for this year’s Art Fair? So are we! Make your way to the event at www.artfairphilippines.com and we’ll see you there.