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Celebrate Philippine Contemporary Art at MoCAF this July

The Modern and Contemporary Art Festival boasts a lineup of exciting and emerging Filipino artistic talent.

Art enthusiasts and collectors now have a new festival to add to their calendars: MoCAF, the Modern and Contemporary Art Festival, will be held from July 29 to 31 at the Fairmont Hotel in Makati. 

Presented by Art+, a publishing house and multimedia platform that started out as the only resource for Philippine visual art news, MoCAF promises to be an exciting showcase of both revered masters and up-and-coming artists that reflect the fast-developing modern and contemporary art scene in the Philippines.

Chelsea Theodossis, Paper Wall, 36×36 inches, oil on canvas

Martin Honasan Within Her Citadels (2022) Mixed media on canvas

MoCAF boasts of a dynamic program of curated exhibitions, insightful talks, and pivotal discoveries that will appeal to discerning collectors and art enthusiasts. The solo artist presentations and group exhibitions have been curated by Ricky Francisco, director of Fundacion Sansó. 

“We envision MoCAF as a momentous culmination of modern and contemporary artists, galleries, and collectors, bridging together opportunities in these different art sectors to grow and appreciate one another’s endeavors,” shares the director.

“Through MoCAF, we aim to strengthen the identity of Filipino modern and contemporary art and focus on the Philippines as a global artistic and cultural center that will be recognized all throughout Southeast Asia.”

The country’s leading galleries will be showcasing some of the most engaging works of art from the best Filipino artists working today. These galleries include Ysobel Art Gallery, Village Art Gallery, DF Art Agency, Leon Gallery, Secret Fresh, and Qube Gallery, among others. 

International galleries such as YOD Gallery and Gallery Kogure of Japan are also taking part. YOD Gallery, in particular, will showcase pop art by select Japanese artists.

Ramon Orlina, Michael Cacnio, Anton Del Castilo, Robert Alejandro, and National Artist Federico Aguilar Alcuaz are just some of the artists who will be showcased at the Special Exhibitions of MoCAF. Rare works by Juvenal Sansó will be on display as well. 

There will also be a contemporary printmaking exhibition with Elmer Borlongan, Angela Silva, Maya Muñoz, and Henrielle Pagkaliwangan. 

Visitors can also look forward to Art+ Discoveries, a showcase of young and emerging artists, curated by Ricky Francisco. MoCAF puts the spotlight on promising artists in the country today. Collectors will have the chance to immerse in the creative insights and crafts of these rising local talents. 

Elmer Borlongan – Old Man Smoking A Pipe

MoCAF Dialogues will be a lecture series that includes timely topics such as “Economic Outlook and Its Impact in the Art World,” as well as “Art World Today and The Luxurious Market.” Ambassador Cariño and Gus Vibal will hold a talk titled “The Future of Art Publishing,” while Julius Babao will take part in a lecture called “Collecting Art: Perspective of Collectors.” Those who would like to know more about how Philippine artworks fare in the global scene can take part in “Curators Speak: Philippine Arts in Venice Biennale.” 

One of MoCAF’s aims is to provide new artistic and cultural experiences beyond the norm. In line with this, MAGIS Creative Space will hold an art therapy talk and workshop with Robert Alejandro.

Filipina, Mixed Medium on acid-free watercolour paper, by Robert Alejandro
Mr. S, Underneath the Robe, 48 x 48 inches, acrylic on canvas

Another exciting aspect of MoCAF is its partnership with global information and communications technology provider Huawei. Artists Jea Gaviña and Margaux Janelle will be awarded as the Huawei Digital Artists for 2022. They each will create their respective digital artworks using the latest Huawei MatePad 10.4. The theme for this year is “Digital Technology and Art in the 21st Century.”

“We started MoCAF in order to showcase works from both modern masters and cutting-edge contemporary artists through well-curated special exhibitions. We aim to promote young and emerging Filipino artists and give them a sense of empowerment through participation in our art festival,” explains Jewel Chuaunsu, MoCAF head of operations.

“We want to enliven interest in the arts in all sectors of society and help generate and educate new art audiences. And through our efforts, we hope to highlight arts and culture as essential elements for social development, creating a space for cultural communication through art.”

MoCAF is sponsored by Aurelia Residences, Huawei, Philippine Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc., Fairmont Makati, Smart Infinity, Vibal Group, Inc., and Xception. 

MoCAF will run from July 29-31, 2022 at the Grand Ballroom of Fairmont Makati. The vernissage will be on July 29. For more information and for ticket registration, visit Like on Facebook and @mocafmanila on Instagram.