“I build up my art in layers to capture the many aspects of existence that go unnoticed. The layers aren’t necessarily visible for the most part, but it reflects my inclination towards classical media and my drive to expound them. These layers incorporate the wood grains of the panel into my compositions.
My work also examines how gender and geographical placements inform those aspects. The challenge is to recognise and portray them so they connect people; that’s what makes me feel alive. To do otherwise would be a life that isn’t mine.”
Mek Yambao (°1989) adapts her vision to the organic elements to create images that “collaborate with nature”. She makes figurative paintings in layers of oil media incorporating the wood grain of the panel and laces it with automatic surreal drawings. This technique is informed by her previous experience in art restoration and inclination to expound traditional art.
Reflecting on the influence of colonialization and geographical placement, she makes delicate yet weighted feminine visuals that reflect her advocacies on environmental protection and intersectional feminism. Her first solo exhibition ‘May I Have Your Attention Please’ (2017) addresses the visibility of women and going against their culturally assigned roles.
She is expounding her media across drawing, painting, and installation to create more immersive art. Mek Yambao lives and works in Manila, Philippines.