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  • Photography by JL Javier  
  • I Hate Sports by Romeo Lee:  "Galing 'to sa show niya sa West [Gallery] yung Mid-life Rises pero hindi siya sinama sa exhibit. Nakita ko lang sa office, tapos parang, ito yung pinakafavorite ko na ginawa niya, kasi nakakatawa eh. (Laughs) Tinanong ko kung magkano, tapos sabi niya trade nalang daw. Madalas talaga mga trade yung art na meron ako kasi mahal din yung art. Binigay ko sa kanya yung work ko on vinyl. Parang glitched photograph siya of Julius Caesar printed on vinyl records. Yung title sa likod — kasi existing work siya — is "Strolling." So found painting siya. Ito lang yung pinatong niya — siya tsaka yung dog. Gusto ko lang na nilagay niya yung sarili niya sa classical painting."  
  • Sinking Feeling, Deepest Meaningless Blackest Pit by Dina Gadia:  "Ito naman yung work ni Dina Gadia sa Blanc Gallery. I think ito yung show niya last year. Tapos sa floor maraming heads na isang malaking vat ng liquid na black. Una ata nila balak na isang set, tapos marami kasi gustong bumili na isa-isa lang. (Laughs) So gumawa nalang sila ng separate stand for each. Lahat sila may look of agony or panic… wala naman reason kung bakit ko siya gusto, I think mahilig lang ako sa mga vintage art. Tsaka gusto ko yung humor ni Dina."  
  • Nardong Tae sculpture by Louie Cordero: "Si Louie Cordero meron siyang ginagawang comics dati, 'yung Nardong Tae. Gumawa na siya dati ng sculpture, ito yung second version. Dati yung head lang yung ginawa niya pero mas malaki. Ito full body sculpture. Gumagawa si Louie Cordero ng zines dati, tapos siya yung main character. Hindi ko na nabasa yung comics kasi noong time na 'yun, hindi pa 'ko interested sa art."  
  • Untitled by Czar Kristoff:  "Mahilig din kasi ako sa music, so nagustuhan ko yung drum set at yung may tao sa likod. Ganda rin ng smoke na lumalabas. I heard of Czar sa Instagram, ganda kasi ng work niya, tapos na-meet ko siya sa art fair. Actually, nabasa ko rin siya sa NOUS. "
  • Luis Santos    

06/16/15 Personal Gallery: Artist Luis Santos

Words by Margarita Buenaventura

Collecting art is itself an art. You need a good eye to appreciate what’s in front of you and a nose to sniff out where the next best thing is. But visual artist Luis Santos is more concerned about collecting the kind of art that makes him laugh. “Minsan gusto ko yung may humor,” he says. “Or yung physical character ng paint. Halimbawa yung kay Jigger Cruz, yung sobrang kapal ng paint sa canvas.”

The Quezon City-based artist has mounted a number of solo shows since 2010, at West Gallery, Manila Contemporary, Blanc Gallery, and Silverlens. He has also been part of several group exhibitions in Manila and Singapore. Santos grew up around art, having come from a family of accomplished artists—grandfather Malang, parents Soler and Mona, siblings Carina and Isabel. But he only started getting into the craft after finishing his business management degree, and only five years after that did he begin his life as a painter.

Appreciating art happened by way of another one of Santos’s interests: music. “Slow yung pag-build up ng interest ko eh,” he explains. “Una mahilig ako sa music, tapos nagbabasa ako ng mga gusto nilang art. Parang nagkaroon ng links pag-nagrereference sila ng ibang tao na nag-iinfluence sa kanila. So ‘pag nakita ko yung art, mas na-aappreciate ko yung music nila.

In NOUS’s Personal Gallery series, the eldest of the Santos kids talks more about the art that he loves. He sits down at his family’s studio to discuss art trades, looks of agony, and scatological cartoon figures.