Artists Paint by Means of Dirty Rivers
How could something dirty and ugly turn into something beautiful?
Pigments from Metro Manila’s most polluted rivers used in creating the paintings in Dirty Watercolor Exhibit
An advertising agency collaborated with a group of artists to create art using custom pigments called dirty watercolor, created using water samples from the most polluted rivers and tributaries in the metro.
But behind the paintings lies a deeper meaning of the exhibit – to raise awareness about the country’s recent environmental state; on how our rivers get more polluted.
According to JC Vargas, one of the talented artists of the exhibit, “Hindi namin sya sinadya na maging monochromatic. By looking at those colors, kung mapapansin niyo, ganyan kadumi yung rivers natin sa Metro Manila. ‘Yung kulay na nakikita ninyo ay kung ano yung kulay ng mga rivers natin.” (We did not intend for the paintings to be monochromatic. By looking at those colors, you could see how dirty our rivers are here in Metro Manila.)
JC Vargas standing beside his painting entitled Sabina. Sized 44 x 55 inches, he said that his painting shows the innocence of the child and how environment affects it. “Malaki kasi ang impact nung bata. Kapag sinabi mong bata, hindi sia aware sa kapaligiran niya, medyo surreal, medyo ironic. Ang saya-saya niya tignan pero yung lugar na pinaglalaruan niya, hindi ganon ka linis o hindi ganun ka healthy para sa kanya.”
In order to use the pigments, TBWA\Santiago Mangada Puno hired a bio-chemist to decontaminate the water samples using an autoclave.
Among the bodies of water where the water samples were taken are from Cainta Creek, Marikina River, Tullahan River, and Taguig Estuary.
The exhibit last May 24 to 27 at Kirov Showroom in Rockwell Center, Makati was curated by the prominent art critic and artist Cid Reyes.
Paintings in the exhibit were sold to raise funds and help in cleaning the Ilog Pasig through ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya Foundation’s Kapit Bisig Para sa Ilog Pasig.