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Isleta, Erika

“Bullied Serenity”

Plaster of paris


I made this piece to symbolize the Spanish colonial rule in the Philippines coming into our country like a bull that literally bullied us into submission, disrupting the innocence and peace of the Filipinos. The colors are bright and the layout is very simple – almost child like, because I wanted to to be portrayed as something that someone so young could easily perceive, sort of looking though a child’s eyes. The child in the valley sits undisturbed among flowers as she drapes a non provoking PH flag across her back. This is similar to the waving red flag they have at bull fights in Spain. The only difference is that the flag is not waving and the child is not provoking the bull and yet, he charges.

ntal”. It’s distinctively smaller in scale compared to more traditional monuments depicting Lapulapu or our other historical figures in different institutional sites around the country. Its 39 inch height is a visual metaphor that references our relative scale as compared to more powerful nations in the region, but despite its size, it visually represents a people who five hundred years ago, resisted the aggression of a colonial power. Fast forward to five hundred years after that historical event, we are again faced with a similar scenario, that of the Chinese incursions into our Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) in the West Philippine Sea (WPS).

Since the national government’s focus on it’s Quincentennial Commemorations are hinged on the 500th year of the introduction of Christianity to our shores, the Magellan-Elcano Circumnavigation of the world and the victory at the Battle of Mactan. The “Kontra Punto” monument would like to create a fresh depiction of related to these historic events by presenting a design that features our ancestors as accomplished warriors and seafarers with a rich culture, and a pre-colonial society with women as healers and counsels as “babaylans” alongside the “datus” and “timawas”. The overall look of the design which is inspired by the hilt of a “kampilan” and the head of a “bakunawa” or mythical serpent, grounds the overall design of the monument to a distinctly Asian aesthetic.

“Kontra Punto” is a 1 meter high monument, the smallest Lapulapu monument with a big story behind it, and a timely message to tell.

A student of Studio Arts