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  • Philippine Arts Council

Sining ng Masa

The Filipino in Me - Insights into Living Heritage

Entry by Jayson Patrimonio Palolan. Montreal, Quebec



Sining ng Masa (Art of the Masses)

This series is inspired from the event I participated in and organized by our youth group Anakbayan where we tackle socio-political issues and history in the Philippines. This 3 collection of image art is what the Philippine society commonly observe, iconic and recent situations we encounter in our community.

Ang Paglilikas. 2018

Artist Bloc Anniversary

"Ang Paglilikas". 2018

Portrays the Filipino Migration

The Filipino diaspora is one of the largest diaspora populations, spanning over 100 countries and Canada is the second country which has the most Filipino immigrants. I began to be curious and started to research the root cause and deep history of our diaspora through studying our history.

"Economically" it is the main reason why we go abroad to find a better living.

Historically, politically and economically these intertwined factors lead to large diaspora in our country.

Since the liberalization of the United States immigration laws in 1965, the number of people in the United States having Filipino ancestry has grown substantially. In 2007, there were an estimated 12 million Filipinos living overseas. Employment conditions abroad are relevant to the individual worker and their families as well as for the sending country and its economic growth and well-being. Poor working conditions for Filipinos hired abroad include long hours, low wages and few chances to visit family.

This art portrays (LEFT) root causes of migration such as economic instability, the exploitation of resources and the deep effect of colonization and political instability. (RIGHT) Working and life conditions encounter abroad deskilling, homesickness, family separation and work safety.

Tinikling. 2014

Tinikling (2014)

The iconic Tinikling Dance performed during fiestas, a national dance, in typical Filipino gathering events we enthusiastically always showcase this folk dance. The dance imitates the simplicity and joy of the lifestyle of the Filipino villagers living in those regions during the Spanish period. In my interpretation, it also symbolizes our resilience: we dance and endure through the obstacles, weave through the rapidly moving bamboo poles with bare feet and ankle, our challenges. Dancers have to carefully follow the rhythm so as not to get their ankles caught between the poles as they snap closed. They start the dance with their hands at their hips or clasped behind their backs. Symbolizing we naturally adapt with perseverance and determination.

BUS 161. 2021

BUS 161 (2021)

This digital art portrays the Caregivers in Montreal, along metro Plamondon ("Filipino town"), Van Horne street a lot of migrant workers waiting for the bus 161.

Filipinos are known to be the best nurses/caregivers/carers in the whole world.

Maybe because of our values and sense of compassion to our elders. We were taught to be kind to them and treat them with utmost respect regardless of who they are.

Caregivers encounter unfortunate experiences: long work hours, working on weekends, struggles with the living conditions, and downward mobility.

Globalization is one of the biggest factors when it comes to "caregiving" in Canada. With the rising demand for caregivers, many countries including Canada have sanctioned opening their borders to foreign caregivers (Parrenas, 2008).

Look how far we come

We get the job done

We are caregivers

We lend our hands, we give comfort for the sick and old, We get the job done.


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