True enough, there is beauty in discarded materials!
Beauty and wellness brand Watsons held its first-ever art exhibit on June 16, 2023 at Mall of Asia Square, Pasay City in an effort to live by and commit further to its environmental goal of preserving the Earth.
The Philippine-based retailer has organized “Reuse With Watsons: A Sustain-Ability Art Exhibit,” which fuses Filipino creativity and environmental objectives in hopes of amplifying the importance of the three Rs: Reuse, Reduce, and Recycle.
Watsons partnered with drybrush Gallery, founded by Jojo Liao, to bring the country’s diverse creative sensibility and collective environmental efforts under one roof.
Various artists have participated in the said event, all of whom have showcased their unique art techniques through compelling messages of environmental awareness and preservation.
The mechanics were to upcycle discarded materials and transform them into art pieces. From there, the top three choices were then selected with incremental cash prizes as rewards.
Neptalie Aunzo’s “Pira-pirasong Yaman” landed in 3rd place, Daniel Dumaguit’s “Gems of Beauty” (“Ligaya” Series) placed second, and Ferdinand Sanchez’s “Aruga” ended up bagging the grand prize. Ten thousand, 30,000, and 50,000 pesos were handed out according to the winners, respectively.
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Watsons art exhibit puts Filipino creativity at the center
One of the participating artists, Briks Benigno or more known to the scene as Linggit, shared that her piece was drawn primarily from “street scenes.” Her miniature piece called “Munting Tindahan” is a visual narration of Filipinos’ everyday lives, taking into the center the mundane appeal of sari-sari stores that every Pinoy is very familiar with.
The number of hours taken to finish the piece is equivalent to four days, with “80 to 90%” of the entire artwork made entirely from recycled materials.
According to Linggit, the entry came as her fourth miniature model made from scraps. She also takes pride in the fact that all the materials used to create her pieces were from their house and had never been bought from a store.
Artist Dominic Urbano, on the other hand, has utilized popsicle sticks to create the “Golden Horse”—a meticulous piece that took him around three to four hours to finish.
The piece bred from the more popular Trojan Horse, which stands as a literary relic of Greek mythology. As the constraints of the COVID-19 pandemic prompted him to explore other art styles other than painting, the popsicle sculpture was born.
Dominic shares that he has been upcycling materials for quite some time already, with some of his artworks made out of tin cans.
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Watsons’ executive speaks of the art and environment
Vikki Encarnacion, Watsons Sustainability and PR Director, proudly shares the environmental initiative that the brand has endeavored to.
“Today, we’re talking about sustainability for the planet. So our ideal here is to tell customers to join us. There is beauty in the things that you would normally discard. Think of reusing them kasi that is one of the 3Rs of sustainability: reuse, reuse and recycle,” she shares.
“We focus on reuse today. So that was the whole idea behind reusing. But more than just reusing, we wanted to create beautiful art pieces, reusing mga discarded materials,” she adds.
The participating artworks are currently featured on drybrush Gallery’s official website. Anyone who might want to purchase the pieces may do so by checking out with either debit card, credit card, online payment, or installment.
Watsons stands as the forerunner of A.S. Watsons Group, “the world’s largest international health & beauty retailer.”It brands itself as a curator of “nothing but the best brands from top manufacturers all over the world,” offering more than 1000 brands that include medicines, cosmetics, fragrances, personal care items, and general merchandise.
Banner Art Paulo Correa