Election mural tackles social issues

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(Photo by Deejae S. Dumlao/The Varsitarian)

COLLEGE of Fine Arts and Design students tackled pressing social issues in “#Halalan2019,” a wall-painting event at the Bagumbayan North, Navotas basketball court last March 7.

Organized by ABS-CBN in line with the May 13 elections, the event gathered eight UST painting majors in an interactive painting session to depict what they thought would be primary social concerns that should be discussed in the midterm election campaign.

Issues that were depicted in the mural included poverty, heavy urban traffic and agricultural reforms.

Under the supervision of Asst. Prof. Felix Garcia II, painting majors, mostly freshmen, participated. They were Katrina Milanco, Jerome Macanaya, Jayvee Francisco, Dwight Quevedo, Raphael Cortez, Joseph Gool, Nathaniel Patron and Jayvien B. Sollestre.

“The mural is a visual interpretation (of) the upcoming elections; through this painting they could better voice out their concerns and raise social awareness,” Garcia told the Varsitarian.

Francisco said he tried to depict problems hounding farmers, such as the low prices for their produce. In his part of the mural, the fine arts student made the inscription, “Bagsak presyo ng gulay, pambawi lang ng puhunan (low prices for vegetable enable barely farmers to break even).”

The middle part of the wall painting focused on heavy traffic in the metropolis.

“Traffic [jams] weigh down our economy,” said Sollestre. “There are too many slow or unfinished industrial projects going on at once that the traffic congestion becomes unbearable.”

“We painted the cars using a one-point perspective to give depth to the work,” explained painting freshman Milanco. “The background shows a sunrise which is symbolism for a new beginning.”

There was no single author for each social issue tackled in the mural because of the interactive nature of the painting session.

“We were actually doing different stuff every few minutes, all of us shifting [to] different positions, so it’s a little tricky to say who made what exactly,” said Quevedo.

Also contributing to the mural were established street artists Venazir Martinez, Bryan Gonzales, Taipan Lucero, Bing Famoso, Genesis Aala and Ross del Rosario.

Quevedo said it was an honor for UST students to participate in the interactive mural painting session. “It is a venue for Thomasian artists to showcase their talent and perspectives,” he added.

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