The Filipino in Me - Insights into Living Heritage
Entry by April "Lianne" Angeles. Edmonton, Alberta
Charcoal on 9 in x 12 in Cold-pressed watercolour paper
Nothing reminds me more of home than sampaguita. Some of my earliest memories are of watching my grandfather buy entire bunches of garlands from young vendors who ran up to our vehicle. He would hang these small, bright flowers with tails of ylang-ylang from the rearview mirror and the scent would permeate the small space.
I think back on these memories fondly, but now that I am older, my thoughts also dwell on the people who sell them on the streets. This young lady wearing baro represents every sampaguita vendor I saw when I was growing up in the Philippines. Rendered in charcoal over white, she could fade into the background with a little bit of blending—just like how they can quickly disappear into the white noise of the city because they are so commonplace. It should not be that way. The poverty suffered by many innocents all to satisfy the greed of a corrupt few should not be accepted as normal.
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