548 West 22nd Street
New York, NY 10011
ONTOPO: Booth P40, Fourth Floor

Available Work

On View May 18 - 21, 2023
Curated by Jon Santos of Ontopo

Bhen Alan
Kanne Arsag
Bamboo leaves, canvas, fabrics, yarns, canvas threads, phragmites, shells, twine, rattan, abaca and industrial plastic fence on stretcher bar.
108 x 60 inches

Bhen Alan
Station of the Cross 1

Canvas, coconut leaves, rattan, dried fruits, coins, twine, abaca, fabrics, handmade paper flowers, threads, electrical tubing
84 x 45 x 20 inches

Bhen Alan

Rattan, bamboo leaves, industrial fence on stretcher bar
80 x 40  inches

Bhen Alan
Anak ko (My child)

Acrylic, hand woven twine on stretcher bar
29 x 40.5 x 1.5 inches

Across various mediums, contemporary artists from the Asian and Pacific Islander diaspora draw on traditional art techniques. From Kashmiri embroidery to Native Hawaiian kapa to Indigenous Filipino banig weaving, new generations are not only embracing and preserving these legacies, but also expanding the artistic possibilities of these methods.



News » MONA

Woven Choreographies: Inside the Movement with Bhen Alan

Alan’s first and most foundational form of expression. Through movement, he made use of an innate talent while upholding the rituals of his ancestors. “When I was growing up in the Philippines, I was trained to dance folk dances—cultural dances—to preserve our culture and traditions, and especially our stories,” he said. “There are a lot of stories involved in the movement and in the choreography itself that you can’t articulate verbally.”



‘The Dust, the Paint, the Glue’: Artists at NADA New York Embrace Household Materials and Domestic Scenes While Digital Art Recedes

The works pair well with those by Filipino-American weaver Bhen Alan, presented by the gallery Ontopo. Alan is currently on a Fulbright studying indigenous Filipino weaving techniques.



Bhen Alan included in NADA Curated by Catherine Taft

This exhibition was an invitation for artists to speculate about the future and the potential worlds that are imagined through present-tense-endings. Artists were asked to think beyond any notion of the apocalyptic and instead reflect on how life will adapt to experiences of a new now, be that political, industrial, ecological, terrestrial, and so on. The response was overwhelmingly vast and varied. That so many artists are toying with these ideas should make us take notice. They are among our most important world-builders.


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