Nomadic Artist-In-Residence Program in The Philippines [Kristina Guison and Jepoy Garcia]

June 18th, 2013 |  Published in News

The Unifiedfield is glad to announce its new Nomadic Artist-In-Residence Program in The Philippines. For the first cycle, we have selected the projects of Filipino-Canadian artists Kristina Guison and Jepoy Garcia, who will commence their residencies in July (assisted by Angely Chi and Ivan Zaldarriaga, our team in The Philippines).

For pictures and updates, please check our new NOMADIC Artist-In-Residence Program in The Philippines in FB:

[July, 2013: Buscalan, Malanggo, Sagada, Sabtang, Basco, Marawi, Bongao, Manila. Residency project assisted by Angely Chi]

Kristina Guison (1987) is a Filipino-Canadian visual artist, currently a Sculpture/Installation student at OCAD U (Ontario College of Arts and Design University) in Toronto. She was born and raised in the Philippines, migrated to Canada in 2007. Her background in the arts ranges from 3-d installation and sculptural works, drawing and painting and production design in theater. She has been involved in the Filipino-Canadian arts community since 2009, starting from being a participant of CLUTCH Vol. 2 (a 6-month arts-based mentorship program funded by the Ontario Arts Council), a program coordinator of CLUTCH Vol. 4 in 2012, a workshop facilitator for the Kapisanan Outreach program.


* Photo by Renelyn Quinico

Reverb is a research, immersion, participatory project that mainly involved a bronze gong casted by the artist in Toronto, Canada. Its conception was inspired by a series of events and moments, public and private, through the years of travelling in the mountainous region of north Luzon. The instrument’s form is derived from the flat gongs (gangsa) played during important ceremonies, to mark transitions, in the Cordillera Region. One of those important ceremonies she was able to witness for the first time in 2009 was a wedding celebration in Sagada, Mountain province in 2009.

Gongs are cultural instruments played to mark transitions and celebrate movements between time, places and states. The physical motion of travelling mirrors the motion of sound in reverberation, as it is created through percussive interactions between two points: the striker and the instrument, the player and the listener, the local and the visitor. Both sides become marked, not by the music played but the memory of the moment, collected and persistently sustained like a reverberation.

The presence stretched and sustained by distance and time. It maintains a tension, not determined by the amount of information divulged or the amount of time spent in immersion but of the impact. Impact derived from such fragile, momentary interactions we tend to cast into permanent, enduring forms.


The immersion and participatory aspects of the projects involved interaction with the locals in an informal and mostly spontaneous approach. Locals from different areas (Buscalan, Malanggo, Sagada, Sabtang, Basco, Marawi, Bongao, Manila) were able to play the instrument by itself or in some occasions, accompanied by other traditional/ non-traditional instruments. The materials acquired for research were also out of mostly spontaneous and fortuitous circumstances.

The research aspect involved studying the material composition and fabrication process of the traditional gong instruments local to the particular areas in the Northern and Southern part of the Philippines. It also included taking recordings of the traditional music the instruments create. The purpose of this research is to understand the technicalities that create the culturally distinct sounds, melody and playing techniques, the gong instruments of the particular groups continue to value and preserve. A series of informal and formal interviews were also conducted to gather information on the social and cultural significance of the gongs. Supplementary research on woodworking culture and weaving were also conducted during the residency. The collected audio-visual material will be utilized into an installation project in Toronto.

[ July 2013: Surigao del Sur. Jepoy’s residency was assisted by Ivan Zaldarriaga. During this residency program, the artist from Butuan Kipong Libres was invited to the island for a month to conduct a DIY surfboard-making workshop].

Jepoy Garcia (aka Mango Peeler)
is a Filipino-Canadian artist and marathon runner. He works in a diverse range of media including collage, screen printing, installation, fashion, food, projection, readymades, workshops, sound, the internet, plant healing, and performative athletics. His process involves the collecting, sorting and patterning of found ephemera.

Known for his large scale installations and happenings, Jepoy is interested in bringing people together through colour and energy. He has exhibited extensively in Canada and has had solo exhibitions in Tokyo and Kyoto Japan where he explored his interest in healing power mystics. He is currently working on his first show for a museum, The Art Gallery of Ontario’s Massive Party.

Jepoy is a self-taught artist also known for his intuitive and collaborative teaching methods and experimental residencies. He was the founder of Halo Halo Village (2009-2012), an exploratory impulse studio specializing in screen printing and experimental workshops. He continues to work extensively with students of all age groups at Seneca College, Sheridan College, Ontario College of Art & Design, The Art Gallery Of Ontario, Artscape, and is also permanently featured in The Royal Ontario Museum.

Jepoy’s residency project:

“As an extension of my current body of work, I would like to utilize this residency to produce site specific art and immerse myself in the Surigao del Sur way of life. I will begin the residency process by conducting research through a series of multidisciplinary processes. I will capture ephemera through photography and video, collect frontage botanical for prints, research the indigenous textiles and food, and document field recordings for soundscapes.

To apply my research and production I will lead a series of workshops with the local community (i.e. a collaborative journal making, screen printing, t-shirt design).

Currently, I am the production designer for Carlos Bulson Theater’s production “In the Shadow of Elephants”, an original play that explores the spirit of Filipino resistance against colonial rule. CBT is a professional Filipino-Canadian theater company and the work produced during this residency will part of the research for the play.

My practice is multi-platform, in that I share my work and artistic presence through live stream workshops, talks, and social media. I have worked extensively with Kapisanan Philippine Centre for Arts & Culture which is a Filipino-Canadian community arts organization that has a space in downtown Toronto. Kapisanan has also agreed to support any exchange via internet or exhibition assistance upon return.

All projects will be documented with photo, video, film and shared on the internet to broaden the voice of my residency. ”