Artist Profile: Alfred and Isabel Aquilizan want us to rethink the value of art

Get to know the Art Fair Philippines 2016 featured artists


( Art Fair Philippines 2016 is back and we know you’re as thrilled as we are. Trust us when we say it will blow your mind as you overdose in Philippine contemporary art—in a way you will absolutely love. As the fair draws nearer, we’ll highlight what this year’s Special Exhibits have in store for you.


Let’s get to know Alfred and Isabel Aquilizan, two of Art Fair Philippines 2016’s featured artists.



Alfred and Isabel Aquilizan are both husband and wife and an artistic team. Currently based in Brisbane, Australia, the couple has exhibited in major art festivals including those held in Venice, Sydney, Gwangju, and Singapore. They have been commissioned by the prestigious Tate Liverpool gallery in England.




Alfred earned his fine arts degree from the Philippine Women’s University in 1986 and his master’s from the Polytechnic University, Norwich College of Art in England. Isabel completed her degree in Communication Arts at Assumption College in 1986. Both Alfred and Isabel taught at the Philippine High School for the Arts in Los Baños, Laguna.



The couple frequently collaborates on multimedia installations that invite viewers, sometimes to interact with the projects. They use a variety of mediums and forms in their installations, not limited to drawings, paintings, videos, domestic items, and clothes.


For Art Fair Philippines 2016, the Alquilizans collaborate, once again, with Pampanga-based artist Antonio Calma. They previously worked with him in 2008, when the Aquilizans "intervened" with Calma's work by taking one of his paintings, cutting it up into small pieces, and reframing them individually to create a new work of art.


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The earlier collaboration was part of a project focusing on Calma and other so-called "Mabini artists," a derogatory term used in the Philippine art scene to describe someone who does populist art. The term refers to the many art shops on Mabini Street in Ermita, Manila during the 1950s to 1970s that sold accessible and affordable art.



Like their previous collaboration, the couple's latest installation will reimagine Calma's works. This time, however, Calma's art will be exhibited alongside the Aquilizans’ reworkings. The project is meant to make viewers reflect on how art is evaluated and valued. It asks us whether there is a difference between the popular art of Calma and the kind of art practiced by the Aquilizans.   


Stay tuned as we tell you more about the featured artists' bright minds at Art Fair Philippines 2016!


Art Fair Philippines 2016 is happening from February 18 to 21, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. at 5/F to 7/F The Link, Ayala Center, Makati City. For more information, visit Art Fair Philippines’ website.



Also read: 
Sneak Peek: Art Fair Philippines 2016 is bigger and more exciting than ever 
Art Fair Philippines 2016: Artists to Watch
Artist Profile: Raffy Napay weaves breathtaking works of art
Artist Profile: Pamela Yan-Santos offers a place to stop and reflect in a restless environment
Artist Profile: Mac Valdezco shows transformation at its finest
Artist Profile: Nona Garcia explores subjects transformed into amazing landscapes
Artist Profile: Mark Justiniani takes you to a fascinating abyss
Artist Profile: Martha Atienza documents lives lived by the sea

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