This Exhibit Unleashes the Superhero in You

Because not all heroes wear capes.

(SPOT.ph) You’ve probably heard the line, “What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger,” over a hundred times. But 24-year-old muralist Juan Paolo “Jappy” Agoncillo tries to present this adage in a different and surprising way. His exhibit, Rising Odds, shows his creative yet playful take on heroes in all forms and their daily struggles: Each day, everyone seems to encounter and dodge one common thing—fear. And this often stops people from leaving their comfort zones or taking that step towards becoming what they aspire to be. The exhibit is on display at Pineapple Lab in Makati City until April 18.

PHOTO BY AZ Camiling
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“This show is actually about stories that inspire and bring us together,” Agoncillo shares with SPOT.ph. Rising Odds explores one’s vulnerability and humanity, as shown by images of heroes. They are portrayed not only as people that save the day, but as beings similar to us—susceptible to harm or attack.

"Star Man" by Jappy Agoncillo
PHOTO BY AZ Camiling
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"Let's Dance" by Jappy Agoncillo
PHOTO BY AZ Camiling

"Moonage" by Jappy Agoncillo
PHOTO BY AZ Camiling
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Agoncillo also shows a different side of fear, which is often seen as something negative, by playing with bold colors and lively subjects in his seven-piece exhibit. His subjects are superheroes from your childhood, and they show grit, strength, and courage. Through their faces, you see a patchwork of that shared experience of being on the brink—whether due to heightened pressure, stress, or burnout—that actually brings out the best in all of us. It is at this moment that one’s ability to face the odds is actually a springboard to one’s heroic capabilities.

"Oddity" by Jappy Agoncillo
PHOTO BY AZ Camiling
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Agoncillo not only takes inspiration from comic books, but uses actual pages from them to add layer to his paintings.
PHOTO BY AZ Camiling

Smaller versions of Agoncillo's paintings are for sale.
PHOTO BY AZ Camiling
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He considers this show very personal—what artist or dreamer doesn't feel fear on a daily basis, after all? He holds a degree in Legal Management from De La Salle University, and aside from attending a few semesters at the University of Santo Tomas’ College of Fine Arts, he has mostly learned on his own. This can sometimes elicit the feeling of being on the brink; but now, Agoncillo takes pride in being a self-taught artist. This is exactly what Rising Odds is all about: Facing our fears and coming out on the other end alive (and kicking).

Rising Odds is on display until April 18 at Pineapple Lab, 6503, R. Palma Street, Poblacion, Makati.

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