Roche Bobois x Artist Nikki Luna: Artistic Feminism Meets The Iconic Mah Jong Sofa
Feminist artist and human rights advocate Nikki Luna creates art not just to please the eye and beautify space, but also to stir conversations and rouse minds and hearts.
With her joint work with French furniture and home decor retailer Roche Bobois, this Filipino visionary brings to light the pressing issues of gender equality, sexual violence, the problems of patriarchy, and other social, political, and cultral concerns relating to women.
Nikki, who is in constant pursuit of different avenues to relay her passions to a wider audience then took up the challenge of re-inventing the high-end brand's iconic piece, the Mah Jong Sofa, by working with textiles and neon lights—materials she's mastered over the years. The resulting artwork is an all-white number decorated with just two words to encompass the current milieu that women (and all people) are living in today: "Dangerous Times."
Everyday should be #internationalwomensday we #speakup call out the many layers and forms of violence against women. stop shaming those who come forward and celebrate their courage. Listen. Believe and let’s stand together. #womenforwomen #womensday #iwd2018 @gabrielapartylist @emmidejesus @inquirerdotnet
"I wanted to talk about the issues surrounding human beings and I still wanted to put relevant issues together with the brand," Nikki explains of her execution.
"That's where you know it's my work, because I won't stop talking about these issues," continues the University of the Philippines graduate.
Since she first broke into the art scene, all of Nikki's artistic endeavors have never been without meaning. As a mother of two little girls and a woman herself, Nikki's dedication to changing the world's attitude towards the female has always been her main motivation for creating masterpieces.
“Society views domestic labor as women’s responsibility and assumes that it is a donation they should make to the economy.” - Tanya Schechter My neon piece #Labor CCP Thirteen Artist Awards exhibit #women #unpaidwork #reproductivelabor #unlearnpatriarchy #laborday #mayouno2018 #workersunite #notocontractualization
Today, Nikki can now add her Roche Bobois collaboration to her impressive roster of accomplishments which includes I Love My Body—a children's book she wrote to teach children about respecting their bodies and protecting themselves against abuse—participation in local as well as Singaporean, Japanese, Chinese, and Parisian exhibitions, a New York art residency, a historical sale at Sotheby's Hong Kong, and being named one of the Cultural Center of the Philippines' 13 Artists in 2015, to say the least.
Coming at the heels of this project was Nikki's reception of a Chevening scholarship grant—a UK-sponsored educational opportunity that allows high-potential social leaders from all the world to pursue post-graduate programs in the UK—that proves her potency as an artist with a worthy mission.
"I am looking forward to taking my MA Arts and Learning at one of the best Art schools in the world! @goldsmithsuol I can’t wait to create women/children focused programs integrating and responding through art, weaving arts into the education system, public stchools, community development with a feminist lens! Here’s to arts and education, we must remember 'education shouldn’t be the crown jewel of the privileged' education for all! @cheveningfco #chosenforchevening A big thank you to UP I owe you for making me the human being I am today! radikal, aktibista, feminista!!" she wrote on Instagram to express her happiness.
As Nikki goes on to deepen her knowledge of the passions closest to her heart, we look forward to her next pieces of work, all of which are sure to be better than the last.
Watch the video below to see Nikki discuss her Roche Bobois collaboration:
Produced by Joan Ko
Videography by Mike Estrada
Video editing by Jason Roque