This August, multimedia artist Jose Tence Ruiz opens the exhibit Takwil: Pixelated Anxieties at the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) Gallery. Running from August 4 to 26, with an Artist Talk on August 18, Takwil is an inventory of the artist’s printed digital images spanning 20 years, from 1996 to 2016.
But Takwil is more than just an exhibit of works. It is a display of the artist’s experimentations and attempts at digital art since 1996, a revelation in itself of how ironically the digital age has yet to prove digital art as durable art form. In the hands of Tence Ruiz, digital art is also revealed as a form through which the complex issues of the times might be discussed. Here, this exhibit becomes a display of the depth of the artist’s knowledge of nation and its crises: the collapse of religious orthodoxy, the subjugation of overseas Filipino workers, the rise of arms sales to guarantee peace, the reduction of public service to private conspiracy, and the ironic inability to authentically reach out given this oversupplied age of communication.
As with all his exhibits, Tence Ruiz reveals how his 30-year career has been about a commitment to nation, one that dares discuss what is difficult, and provides a space for what is silenced.
Takwil: Pixelated Anxieties will run at the NCCA Gallery from August 4 to August 26, with an Artist Talk on August 18 at the Leandro Locsin Hall, NCCA Building.