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The Butanding: A Narrative Illustration Book and Exhibition

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My work focuses on the themes of grief, closure, and celebration of life. Life is a catalyst both celebration and grief. Feeling joy when a life is introduced is as common as feeling pain when a life is lost. When

My work focuses on the themes of grief, closure, and celebration of life. Life is a catalyst both celebration and grief. Feeling joy when a life is introduced is as common as feeling pain when a life is lost. When I lost my maternal grandmother nearly a year ago, I felt grief accompanied with guilt. I never got a chance to say goodbye since we lived so far apart, her residing in the Philippines and me residing in the United States. In order to get rid of these negative emotions, I sought closure. I attended her funeral, and now I want to celebrate her life through my artwork.
My work comes in two parts: an illustration book titled The Butanding and an illustration exhibition. The book will be published through lulu.com and made available to the public. The exhibition component will be held from March 2nd to March 6th in Gallery 100 as part of my senior exhibition Post Pre-Production with six other colleagues in the School of Art. The illustration book is a narration of a little girl and her growing friendship with a whale shark. The overarching theme of the creative project is closure with the passing away of loved ones.
The Butanding is a narrative illustration book about a young girl befriending the local menace of her village, the whale shark. Similar to my own experience, the main subject—the young girl—of my narrative is shown suffering from grief and guilt over her grandmother’s death. My work illustrates a progression of the young girl’s emotional state as she goes on a journey with the whale shark or locally known in the Philippines as the “butanding”. It provides the scenario of a grieving individual who gets the chance to reconnect with a deceased loved one and rebuild relationships that were lost.

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2015-05

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Whispers from Above: Creative Community Exploration of Grief

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Whispers from Above is a creative project that aims to normalize the conversation and validate the emotional experience of grief, through the use of art therapies. Art therapy can be expressive in which someone creates their own work, such as

Whispers from Above is a creative project that aims to normalize the conversation and validate the emotional experience of grief, through the use of art therapies. Art therapy can be expressive in which someone creates their own work, such as visual art, poetry, performance, music, movement, etc. Art therapy can also be receptive in which someone analyzes and understands someone else's artwork. This project was released on SoundCloud in order to make grief resources more accessible to all and to build an online community.<br/><br/>Whispers from Above worked with twelve poets, fifteen artists, six different interviewees, and multiple musicians to create a month of grief support. The finale piece of Whispers from Above was devised from the twenty-nine poems used within this month-long healing journey. All the individual poems were woven into a single devised poem to be presented as the final piece symbolizing that no one is alone in grief.<br/><br/>Whispers from Above is creative community exploration of grief, loss, and death in which we hope contributors, and listeners find solace and support. This series will exist on SoundCloud after March 27th, 2021 with a monthly release of a poem or interview accompanied by art, and music.

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2021-05