Bababa ba? Bababa.
The Filipino in Me - Insights into Living Heritage
Entry by Karl Mata Hipol. North Vancouver, British Columbia
Bababa ba? Bababa. (Going down? Going down.)
Medium: Acrylic on Denim
60 x 48 inches
I am Karl Mata Hipol, a Filipino settler living, working, and creating in the unceded traditional territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and səlil̓ilw̓ətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) nations. I am a graduate of BFA (2022) from Emily Carr University of Art + Design. The galleries I have exhibited include the Burnaby Village Museum (2022), Burrard Arts Foundation (2022), Centre A (2021), Headline Gallery (2021), Seymour Art Gallery (2021), the Reach Gallery Museum (2020-21), and FCA (2018-22). Previously, I curated an exhibition at the Gordon Smith Gallery (2021-22).
'Ang hindi lumingon sa pinanggalingan ay hindi makakarating sa paroroonan' or 'a person who does not look back at where they came from will not get to their destination', a famous Filipino saying helps as a motivation for my new exploration. This time, I am embarking on a journey that looks back at Filipino history from the 16th to 18th century, before and during the Spanish colonization.
By employing various disciplines like calligraphy, painting, printmaking, sculpture, art installation, and public artwork, my objective is to relearn Philippine art and architecture history, looking closely at the significant changes or developments. Ultimately, my goal is to reclaim, highlight, and celebrate Filipino identity and cultural heritage. Additionally, to comprehend my positionality, weave our stories, and disturb the 'Filipino invisibility' in the Canadian landscape.
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