15/September/2021

Artist’s Statement

by: Jacob Laneria



after Balikbayan(2018) by Kwentong Bayan Collective


Balikbayan boxes have been hallowed
out to show the world they truly contain,
cans of SPAM are shanty houses,
CAMPBELL’S piled up as a Christmas Tree
in a room with HEREFORD CORNED BEEF
as cabinets and a miniature box emptied out
in the middle. COLGATE tubes stand beside
packs of IVORY serving as a backdrop to a
town dance. She narrates to the audience
who might be unfamiliar with the concept
her childhood memory of tracing her feet
along with siblings and cousins.
She was naive then, drawing seemed more fun
than actually getting a new pair of shoes
in the box arriving next December.
Everyone was intent as she unpacks
the skill needed to maximize four corners,
the forward-thinking required in taking
note of expiry dates of goods bought half as cheap,
and the pleasure and the pain of remitting care,
all learned when she herself left the country
that can’t produce basic necessities. 
Hence, the need to clear the boxes.


“Artist’s Statement”. The Kwentong Bayan Collective is made up of Toronto-based artists Althea Balmes and Jo SiMalaya Alcampo. I was able to visit their exhibit BALIKBAYAN at Worker’s Art and Heritage Centre in February 2018. Their comics of Canada’s Lived-In Caregiver Program is included in Drawn to Change: Graphic Histories of Working-Class Struggle, edited by Graphic History Collective with Paul Buhle (Between The Lines Press, 2016).

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About the poet Jacob Laneria is currently a lecturer at the University of the Philippines Visayas, Iloilo. Some of his works have appeared in Revolt Magazine, Loch Raven Review, Ani, and Katitikan. His zine of short fiction, Mga Migranteng Sandali, is distributed by Kasingkasing Press. He lives near Iloilo City.








KONTRAKAN | VOL 1: KUMPUL KEBO

A PLAYTICLE by Fieni Aprilia and ego heriyanto CL: Is romance even necessary?
MC: Well… Surely it isn’t food? So I won’t die without it. But it does have something to do with maturity
MC: According to them,  ACCORDING TO THEM don’t @ me
CL: EXACTLY. I mean, if they think it’s necessary then whatever but it’s so unfair that they keep shoving their preferences as normalcy down our throat (Read More)

NANNYGATE

SUBMISSION by Jacob Laneria“A poppy also pinned in her chest, she never looks at the press. This day is not for her. Her widest smile only appears when following around the three beautiful children, much more experienced living under the public eye.“ (Read More)

EXCERPT FROM SCARLET

SUBMISSION by Francesco Levato“ T he digital/visual poems are created through erasure of the novel The Scarlet Plague collaged with glitched imagery from everyday life in lockdown. The titles of poems in the series are then derived from objects contained in each glitched still life.“ (Read More)

ARTIST’S STATEMENT

SUBMISSION by Jacob Laneria“ She was naive then, drawing seemed more fun than actually getting a new pair of shoes
in the box arriving next December.“ (Read More)