Artist Talk

Images above taken by Karl Castro for Silverlens Gallery

While T & I were putting together the presentation for the artist talk, I did not realize that my parents wanted to attend the event. I was having dinner with them the evening I arrived when my mom broached the subject. At first, I felt really shy that they were going to be in the same room with me but kept it to myself. Then I thought about it more and I said yes-they should go. It is an opportunity for them to understand what it is that I am so passionate about. Even my sister and my brother came to the event.

The topic I discussed was the Family as a Photographic Subject. The talk was divided into two parts. The first one was showing the progression of my work from when I began photographing as a college student in Manila until the present day. I also discussed the creative process behind Family Spaces and gave the audience a glimpse of a work in progress that also involved my family. The second portion was introducing works of other photographers whose long term projects tackle the same subject matter. I thought it would be a good opportunity to introduce various ways of telling a personal story. I just thought to do my part to share what I know and possibly inspire someone from the audience to think differently with the way they approach their own projects.

After the talk, three students approached me. They were from the same university I attended. I loved their energy and they asked a number of questions. One of them said something like we need people like you to teach at the university. Another asked if I was planning to come back to do a workshop. No one really knows when such opportunities will come. Nonetheless, it was great to hear their feedback.

When I met my parents at the gallery, both were beaming. I each gave them a hug and felt grateful that they were still healthy and able to experience this moment with me.

The Opening

Me, my sister from New York and my brother from Budapest.

Last photograph before gallery closed that evening.

It rained hard for most of the day and then it stopped an hour before the opening started. That morning, I was sitting in bed in the same room I grew up as a child and listened to the rain as it poured heavily on the roof. I smiled and remembered the many times my sisters and I would rejoice the minute we heard the weatherman Amado Pineda suspend a school day due to a typhoon landing in Metro Manila. For a split second, I could not help but think of the possibility that perhaps the opening might be suspended too. I shook my head-- nah, what a silly thought!

It turned out to be a successful event. It was wonderful to see family, old friends and relatives. My sister came all the way from New York. She had a last minute change to her flight itinerary to avoid the snowstorm in Detroit. She arrived past midnight the day before the opening. On the other hand, my brother flew in from Budapest, his total flying time was something like 22 hours with 2 stop overs before arriving in Manila the day of the opening. It really meant a lot that they were there for me.