Travelogue: Philippines (Escolta, Manila)

I am two-thirds the way through my residency that is hosted by 98B, an artist run space in Escolta, Manila. The residency is made possible by Asialink and the Department of Culture and the Arts Western Australia. Some snapshots of the neighborhood where my studio is based and its daily going-ons are available below.

There are also many old buildings in the area some of which survived the American bombing in WW2 and some that have been rebuilt.

Escolta is an interesting area where the oldest Chinatown on the globe is located alongside Manila’s Muslim quarter. Nestled amongst it all is the Quiapo catholic church and street markets, typical in any Asian city.

Manila is one of Asia’s most fascinating cities, it is the largest place in the Asian geography that has a dominant catholic religion.

If you take the time and the have the courage of adventure, Manila is a city with many different layers to be peeled back and be discovered. For me, it was a good place to be based for my three-month long residency and research ideas around Filipino post-colonial identity in contemporary art along with learning traditional rattan furniture making techniques .

Fiona Gavino