As you enter Sining Makiling Art Gallery, the familiar buzz of a jam-packed cafeteria welcomes you. The celebrities and icons in Marc Cosico’s Lamon come alive.
The subjects in Cosico’s Lamon are not literally gorging on their Kangkong and rice or their Chicken Joy. In fact, it seems as though they are simply posing with their meals. Manny Pacquiao and his eight arms seem to endorse adobo and rice, Mia of Pulp Fiction holds a digital console in front of her spaghetti, and we see Joker, Laurie and a Madonna And Child-parody in a “Fast Food Feast Fiasco.”
The collection feasts on traditions and recreates them, like the traditional fiesta in a piece called “Salu-Salo.” We see various cosplayers, figures painted by children and a lechon. This particular piece is a collaboration between the artist and children from Mandaluyong. After completing a workshop with the children, Cosico began working on “Salu-salo,” but the children wanted to continue painting. Having run out of paper, he decided to let the children dabble with his work, producing a banquet of characters and techniques.
Recreating old traditions by recreating old works seem to be at the helm of Lamon. Cosico paints over a graffiti by students of Philippine High School for the Arts and Philippine Science High School in “Playful Mind.” In “Sumo-sonang Simpson,” he paints a Homer-looking Pnoy holding a hotdog bun in front of a set originally made for a ballet recital.
As curator Toto dela Cruz describes, “By borrowing concepts from politics, religion and pop culture, Cosico used these icons and images to remind us of the ideological contexts of conspicuous and individuous consumption.” The exhibit gnaws at the idea of devouring and being devoured by the culture of consumerism.