Place of Region in the Contemporary

In Essays by pcan33 Comments

In this incipient moment, PCAN is shaped by the concerns and anxieties implicated in the phrase “Place of Region in the Contemporary.” It is a deliberately elusive term, the better perhaps for PCAN to move within a wide latitude as it explores its various nodes, its endeavors or impulses of making: making art, making exhibitions, making relations. At this stage, too, PCAN scans a wide horizon to set the coordinates of the “Philippine” that is oftentimes reduced to the national. It is at this point that the “region” becomes some kind of a foil, though not necessarily a binary opposite or an alternative. The region is imagined to having a place, a geography, and therefore a geopolitic and a geopoetic. But when “place of region” is formulated, the geography is instilled with the urgency of position, an assertion of location. PCAN is currently under this climate of positionality and locality that is exigent and interested. The region can transpose within the nation and beyond it, within a geopolitical area and through it, across hemispheres and around it. It is not only province or periphery. It is not only a collection of countries co-opted under the sign of a block or a coalition. It is route, corridor, travel, axis, harbor. It can be at home and abroad, city and suburb, gap or nexus between water and land.

PCAN mindfully reflects on the notion of “region” as a level of locality; it may be construed as hometown or island within the nation or a space beyond the nation such as the inter-nation. However it is regarded, the region is turned into a trope to track sites and zones of various scales so that it can recover traces of agency from the hardened identities and monolithic rubrics of nation or globalization. All this plays out in an inchoate environment or a complex milieu called the contemporary. Needless to say, the latter is re-inscribed in the interrogation of both place and region. For this initial foray, PCAN proposes the following entry points: an exhibition of contemporary art across the country; an anthology of the texts of Raymundo Albano; research on four artists who stood on the threshold of the modern and the contemporary; and a revisit to modes of honing artists and spaces away from the governmentality of the capital city.
PCAN conceptualizes the region as shifting strata of locations. As locations they are rooted in natural histories and historical transformation. The region is seen in relation to the contemporary, gauging its place, that is, its claim to be in this place, its stake in this claim, and the effects of this sense of belonging. The intention is, therefore, to convene these three terms in one utterance: place, region, contemporary. They point to temporality, instance, subjectivity. To be positioned in a particular locus at a certain time encompasses the politics of the region. This region as mentioned is shifting because it is construed as emergent and extensive. While it is grounded, it is linked and hinged, as it continually also delinks and unhinges. PCAN is interested in this process of settling, unsettling, resettling. It is a process realized by agents and structures that are verisimilarly enlivened by this process.

Three templates support these initiations.

First is the archive-exhibition that ferrets out the creative and intellectual work of five artists who worked on the edge of the modern and the contemporary in Philippine life: Raymundo Albano, Jess Ayco, Santiago Bose, Abdulmari Imao, and Junyee. They bring into their respective forays the precipitates of their hometowns: Ilocos Norte, Bacolod, Baguio, Sulu, and Los Baños. They also translate these precipitates into condensations of migration to Manila and elsewhere. These artists incubated hybrid forms in their studios: painting, sculpture, photography, drawing, intermedia, installation, video, and performance. Aside from migrancy, the queer element figures, as strongly evinced by the inspiring oeuvre of Ayco.

The second format is the survey presentation that accrues from research on the various art worlds across the country. It aims to traverse the ecologies of this art world and thrust to the fore productions that embody how these art worlds are produced. The survey, because of its horizontal orientation, implicates a variety of expressions. It also casts a wide net and draws attention to a mix of subjectivities: generational, gendered, queered. Counter-intuitively, it furnishes the city its own distinction as a region and inflects the so-called province with the gritty ethnographies of protest, play, and catastrophe. Diversity is not the only agenda of this survey. It probes the logic of the aesthetic practice nurtured by localities.

The third format is the laboratory in which research material and aesthetic proposition come together to produce pedagogical modalities that blur the boundaries between art and political economy. This is an interesting gesture to the degree that is displaces the centrality of the production of art from a singular intelligence and consequently redistributes the energies of the facture of the sensible proposition and its makers. In the same breath, the centrality of Manila as the privileged source and telos of knowledge transmission is disabused as it dwells on places like Los Baños, Dumaguete, and Dansalan/Marawi. It likewise complicates the idea of an exhibition because the display is at once disrupted and supplemented by the para-curatorial and the post-curatorial: gathering of data, reading session, discussion. And the forms in the space are a cross between the ephemeral and the documentary: writing, paper, instruction.

These three situations of presenting and perceiving reckon with the promise of the contemporary to simulate the ambience of both the festival and the seminar in which there is excitement in the recognition and acknowledgement of art as well as deep reflection on its ramifications for the intimacies of the body politic. Finally, in terms of a curatorial panoply, PCAN tries to choreograph a space that allows for contaminations, spillovers, interferences across the specific enunciations of the projects. This is done by drawing out zones of interface in terms of, let us say, a shared origin or a glimpse of semblances or moments of gathering like an essay, cooking, moving image.

From Place of Region in the Contemporary catalogue. Download the whole catalogue here.


  1. I think other website proprietors should take this website as an example , very clean and good user friendly style . Talyah Baudoin Hurff

  2. Good post! We are linking to this great content on our website. Keep up the good writing. Giustina Ad Virendra

  3. Pretty! This has been an extremely wonderful post. Thanks for providing this information. Brittney Evyn Treiber

  4. Muchos Gracias for your blog article. Thanks Again. Want more. Isabelita Ike Hogle

  5. I really enjoy the blog article. Really looking forward to read more. Want more. Lisbeth Quintus Verdi

  6. Very good post! We are linking to this particularly great post on our site. Keep up the good writing. Olive Irwinn Gredel

  7. Thank for your writting! I have read through some similar topics! However, your article gave me a very special impression, unlike other articles. I hope you continue to have valuable articles like this or more to share with everyone!

  8. Thanks for the post keep on sharing new things of you are looking for the twitter advertising agency then visit BrandBurp.

  9. Your mode of explaining the whole thing in this post is really good, every one can simply understand it, Thanks a lot.| Prudi Robinet Coumas

  10. After looking over a number of the blog posts on your site, I honestly appreciate your way of blogging. I saved it to my bookmark website list and will be checking back in the near future. Please visit my website as well and let me know what you think. Harriott Dugald Id

  11. Hey there! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any trouble with hackers?
    My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up
    losing many months of hard work due to no back up.
    Do you have any methods to stop hackers?

  12. hey there and thank you for your information – I’ve certainly picked up anything new
    from right here. I did however expertise some technical points using this web site,
    since I experienced to reload the site many times previous
    to I could get it to load correctly. I had been wondering if your web hosting is
    OK? Not that I am complaining, but sluggish loading instances times will very frequently affect your placement in google and can damage your
    quality score if ads and marketing with Adwords. Well I am adding this RSS
    to my e-mail and can look out for much more of your respective interesting content.
    Make sure you update this again very soon.

  13. My spouse and I absolutely love your blog and find many of your
    post’s to be exactly I’m looking for. Do you offer guest writers to write content
    to suit your needs? I wouldn’t mind producing a post or elaborating on some of the
    subjects you write in relation to here. Again, awesome weblog!

  14. A motivating discussion is worth comment. I believe that you ought to publish
    more on this subject, it might not be a taboo matter but typically people don’t speak about these subjects.
    To the next! Kind regards!!

  15. Spot on with this write-up, I seriously believe that this amazing site needs far more attention. I’ll probably be
    returning to read through more, thanks for the advice!

  16. Excellent weblog here! Also your web site quite a bit up fast!
    What host are you the usage of? Can I get your affiliate link
    for your host? I desire my web site loaded up as fast as yours lol

  17. Heya i am for the first time here. I found this board and I find It really useful
    & it helped me out much. I hope to give something back and
    help others like you aided me.

  18. Hello, I think your blog could be having web browser compatibility problems.
    When I take a look at your blog in Safari, it looks fine however when opening in Internet Explorer,
    it has some overlapping issues. I just wanted to give you a quick heads up!
    Other than that, great site!

  19. I would like to thank you for the efforts you have put in writing this site.
    I’m hoping to check out the same high-grade blog posts from
    you in the future as well. In fact, your creative writing abilities has encouraged me to get my very own website now 😉

  20. hey there and thank you for your info – I’ve definitely picked up something new from
    right here. I did however expertise some technical points using this web site, since I experienced to reload the web site a lot of times previous to I could get it
    to load properly. I had been wondering if your hosting is OK?
    Not that I am complaining, but sluggish loading instances times will often affect your placement in google and could damage your
    high-quality score if advertising and marketing with Adwords.
    Well I’m adding this RSS to my e-mail and can look out for
    a lot more of your respective intriguing content. Make sure you update this
    again soon.

Leave a Comment