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'Walang Kikilos' Exhibit Shows Hellish, Sickening Metro Manila Traffic

In a recent exhibition at National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) Gallery in Intramuros from November 9-30, 2017, artists and curators highlighted the worsening traffic in Metro Manila through an exhibition entitled “Ang Tibok ng Tigagalgulong Puso: Walang Kikilos!”/ “The Beat of the Inertropic Heart: Nobody Move!”.

Walang Kikilos features contemporary works of mixed and multimedia portraying the peculiar traffic experience of every Filipino.

“Untitled (Under Construction)” (2015-2017) | Walang Kikilos


Backing up by a research, in Boston Consulting Group’s (BCG) study entitled “Unlocking Cities”, Metro Manila was ranked 3rd in Southeast Asian cities’ traffic experience. It says that motorists and commuters spend an average of 66 minutes daily of being stuck in traffic. How sickening is that? Metro Manila is followed by Bangkok, Thailand to have the worst (72 minutes) and Jakarta, Indonesia (68 minutes).

On the contrary, the cities which perform best are Singapore (30 minutes) and Hongkong (35 minutes). In addition to the 66-minute stress we’ll get from being stuck in traffic, a driver spends about 24 minutes each day scouting for a parking space.

To think, how much productivity do we lose when we get stuck in traffic daily and difficulties in finding parking spaces? I say too much.

Curators and artists who surely get burnout with the worsening traffic in Metro Manila were able to address this issue creatively and contemporarily which are Carina Evangelista, Gary-Ross Pastrana, Gerome Soriano, Idan, Jun Sabayton, Jayvee del Rosario, Kaloy Olavides, Kawayan de Guia, Lani Maestro, Romeo Lee, Louie Cordero, Lourd de Veyra, Mark Salvatus, MM Yu, Neo Maestro, Paulo Alcazaren, Paul Mondok, Poklong Anading, Rico Entico, and Ronnie Lazaro.

“Ayaw mo paglihok. Pero nilihok ang tanan” shows a video recording where the artists stood still in the middle of EDSA to know if they will get inflicted during a hellish, sickening traffic.

“Ayaw mo paglihok. Pero nilihok ang tanan.” (2017) | 19:53 mins | Jun Sabayton and Kaloy Olavides


Viewing the works on display would take one back to the stressful experiences one has to deal with in each of his day. Missing deadlines because of bad traffic, getting apprehended because of tardiness at work, name it! Metro Manila’s current traffic situation burns us out.

Beside a huge freedom wall that speaks of “Paano mo pa mapapalala ang traffic?” is Paul Mondok’s “Help me Piccachu/Joy Bags”.


So, hanggang kailangan walang kikilos? May we all question ourselves until when we can endure these hellish, sickening, and unbelievable traffic experiences with the rest of the 25-million people in the metro.