Manila (CNN Philippines Life) — Since its inception in 2006, Art in the Park, touted as the country’s first and foremost affordable art fair, has been considered a go-to destination for unique and highly collectible creations from some of the best Filipino artists, helping the field flourish in terms of local consciousness and support.
This year, with the fair’s theme of “10 Years, 10 Artists,” signed limited-edition prints from artists who, over the years, have had their work featured on Art in the Park’s postcard invitations will be reproduced and sold. The list includes prominent names in the Philippine contemporary art scene: Charlie Co, Marina Cruz, Dex Fernandez, Geraldine Javier, Pete Jimenez, Joy Mallari, Jose Santos III, Pamela Yan Santos, Rodel Tapaya, and Jomike Tejido.
A project of the Museum Foundation of the Philippines and Philippine Art Events, Inc., in support of the National Museum, Art in the Park began a decade ago with 12 makeshift art galleries in tents in one corner of Jaime Velasquez Park. It has since grown to occupy much larger sections of the park, featuring 60 art galleries with the participation of collectives and student groups.
Regarding the fair’s evolution through the years, one of its co-founders, Trickie Lopa, says, “Art in the Park has witnessed the growth of the local visual art scene — perhaps it has even played a major role toward drawing attention to Philippine contemporary art.” If you’ve ever been to the event, she adds, “then perhaps you have noticed that our visitors cut across all demographics: seasoned collectors, art enthusiasts, young professionals, students, families — all drawn to Art in the Park’s casual and inviting atmosphere, being allowed to peruse art in an unintimidating setting.”
This year’s Art in the Park will feature numerous works of art including paintings, photographs, sculptures, and pottery, all available at P50,000 or below. Wax sculptures by the renowned sculptor Daniel dela Cruz will also be displayed; the 4-foot-tall figures depict standing men, some of which are holding metal umbrellas, and are intended to be lit like candles and to gradually melt away through the day.
That the project has gone on for a decade should come as no surprise. As Lopa puts it: “As long as you have an art scene that’s thriving, Art in the Park will keep going.”
In celebration of its 10th anniversary, Art in the Park is set to hold a special presentation on Sunday, April 3, 2016, at Jaime Velasquez Park in Salcedo Village, Makati, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.