Arts & Culture

Garapata, Balloons: Wallpaper by Your Favorite Local Artists at Omnibus Pop-Up

The first collection of WallMasters limited edition wallpaper includes contributions by artists Tata Montilla, Dex Fernandez, and Robert Alejandro.
IMAGE THE ARTISTS AND WALLMASTERS
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Scott Kho’s initial exposure to arts and design came from supplying high-quality marketing collateral to top galleries and other companies before expanding his business to include large format printing for commercial use. This year, Kho starts on a new venture with WallMasters, a line of locally printed wall covers using imported materials. “I’ve decided to bring our expertise from commercial walls into private offices and homes with a limited edition series by fantastic local designers and artists,” he says.


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WallMasters’ inaugural collection will be launched at pop-up gallery OMNIBUS’ Summer 2018 edition, which will run from March 8 to 11 at Artelano 11’s showroom. It features various themes and styles by WallMasters’ first batch of collaborators that includes artists Garapata, Robert Alejandro, Tata Montilla, and artist/photographer Eduardo Herrera Zobel.


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Alejandro wanted to create something “that conveys adventure and exploration.” “As a child, I would always look at design elements of a plate, a giant wooden trunk, etc., so I know that there will be kids quietly looking at the details of my wallpaper,” the artist explains. His steampunk-inspired design will definitely invite curiosity. The artist also has another surprise up his sleeves: “I am mesmerized by the wallpaper from the Netflix series, The Crown. So, I’m going to make a Filipino version,” Alejandro excitedly reveals.

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Nature lovers will definitely be drawn to Zobel’s images of the sea and the creatures that inhabit it. He was naturally drawn to the project: “If you think about it, we love having wallpaper on all of our digital devices: Phones, computers, everything! I believe bringing them out of the screen and into our tangible world is an outstanding idea.


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Artist and wall finish expert Tata Montilla chose marijuana leaves for his theme. “I wanted to design something traditional and at the same time relevant to present times,” Montilla says. He also thinks the project is a timely addition to the design landscape, saying that “as a country, we have always been starved when it comes to choices of materials. People make do with what’s available or what fits their budget. I hope this collaboration bridges that gap and gives people more inspiration in designing their spaces.”

Dex Fernandez’s art is definitely not for the faint-hearted. His design under his street art handle, Garapata, is an intoxicating montage of the artist’s famous icons. “Infestation” is the work’s message, according to Fernandez: “You can’t stop its proliferation, just like Filipinos spread out all over the world.” He also thinks the project is another way of bringing art to a wider audience. “Homemakers, or a different market, will be exposed to unusual designs, a way for them to veer away from what they’re familiar or comfortable with. Nakakasuka na ang mga cute na pusa na ’yan… Hello Kitty! It’s time for Garapata,” Fernandez says, laughing. March 8 to 11, Artellano 11, Unit A-11, 2680 F.B. Harrison Street, Pasay; 832.9972. Wallmasters, 729.7957, 729.7960, 0917.85489494. D

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This story was originally published in the March 2018 issue of Town&Country Philippines.

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Devi De Veyra
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