Last March 12, however, was about the representation of both visual art and music in equal parts: Switch!, a three-way live art collaboration and exhibit, was an event that — albeit small — was able to pull off what most festivals fail to do.
The venue in itself is already music and visual arts personified: Futurestudio, formerly just a music producer’s hub in the heart of Cubao X, has its own brand of art on its walls and ceiling long before it has decided to be transformed into a space where all types of artists can visit to create and collaborate. The vibe of the place was quite warm and welcoming where one can just sit, ponder and wait for inspiration to strike.
And then the show began. While some of their finished works were already on display, abstract artist Lee Caces, line artist Kara Pangilinan, and pop artist Jappy Agoncillo still left the audience in awe as they created art in action. Individually and on the first canvases they started to paint on, their skill was already evident. However, it was when they started switching canvasses that their talents were truly showcased, each of their styles complementing those of the others, making their pieces distinct yet similar at the same time.
Of course, the event would not have been complete if it wasn’t for the well-curated music. The tunes of singer-songwriter Martti Franca, kalimbatronic artist Bea Lorenzo, and jazz band Extrapolation sounded so distinct from one another, but it is in that diversity that the connection between the attendees and the art was built. Having to listen to music while observing all those artists was a treat to the senses: therapeutic to some, energy-giving to others. Seeing (and hearing) artists being engrossed in the work that they are doing is a different experience. With all the collaboration around, it felt like the audience was also participating in the creation process, even if their only role was to watch.
It is undeniable that the beauty of Switch! is found in its intimacy. The space was small, yes, and the number of attendees is nothing compared to other art and music events. But go ahead and take into consideration the overflow of emotions felt from the songs heard, the excess of inspiration from the creators to the crowd and perhaps even beyond, and the massive space filled by the creative juices from that four hours of nothing but artful bliss. You may have as well filled out an entire coliseum.
Futurestudio is a space dedicated to creating the indigenous/native modern music of Manila. It is also now a record label. Follow them on Facebook for more updates about their projects, events and other collaborations.