From a Japanese film fest to a ‘virgin’ market, here’s where to celebrate creativity and the arts

There’s nothing creatives deserve more than homes to thrive, grow, and exist in freely. When artists commit to making their passion projects more accessible, the public can fully partake in the stories they tell and the causes they contribute to. 

Creative freedom is boundless, and so are the avenues that translate creativity into pieces that inspire, enlighten, and disturb audiences with reflective truths.

Artists hone their skills best in communities that champion storytelling over competition and judgment. Through these safe spaces, they can express themselves and contribute to culture however they want without sacrificing their personal preferences and styles. 

Countless art-related discourse threads aside, we can never truly determine what exactly constitutes it (or if there is such a thing). But with these five celebrations of artistic narratives, maybe we don’t always need to.

Japanese Film Festival 2024

The 2024 Japanese Film Festival is taking a trip across the country with free screenings for cinephiles and Japanese pop culture enthusiasts. Movie-goers can browse through the festival’s diverse lineup without stressing over budgets and limited timeslots. You even have the liberty of watching one, two, or all of the films on the festival’s stacked roster. There’s a Japanese classic for every genre and trope you can think of, including nostalgia trips with rehashes of iconic animé shows like “Voltes V” and “Detective Conan.” 

When: Feb. 1 to Mar. 3 in select cinemas nationwide

10 Days of Art

In line with this year’s highly anticipated Art Fair PH, 10 Days of Art is honoring the best of contemporary Philippine art through shows, events, galleries, and museum exhibitions open to the public. From photography showcases to life-sized art installations, 10 Days of Art welcomes creative outputs of all forms and mediums that recognize the country’s most prolific up-and-coming artists. 

When: Feb. 9 to 18

Sari-Sari: Sari-saring Gamit, Chika, at Ganap

Artista ng Rebolusyong Pangkultura (ARPAK), the Artists Alliance for Peasant Rights (AAPR), and Paraluman Productions are teaming up for Sari-Sari at the Maginhawa flea market. Attendees can look forward to finding new homes for preloved items, attending workshops and discussions, and doing their part for significant causes.

Author and musician Ronaldo Vivo Jr. will hosting a writing workshop titled “Pagnonobela’t Tuligsa: Pagsulat Ng Nobela Bilang Paglalahad Ng Mga Panlipunang Kadaingan.” You can also attend a panawagan bracelet making workshop by Sweetxdreams.

There are also talks from peasant organizations: Unyon ng mga Manggagawa sa Agrikultura’s “Ano nga ba ang Chika sa Chacha?” and PAMALAKAYA’s “How Reclamation Affects Communities Around Manila Bay.”

Proceeds from the event will help strengthen campaigns for rural development and land reform. 

When: Feb. 17 and 18, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. 

Where: 92 Maginhawa St. cor. Magiting St., Teachers Village, Diliman, Quezon City

The Virgin Market

Newbies in city art gatherings are making their debut at The Virgin Market this weekend. After learning the ropes of art conventions and get-togethers, these first-timers will try their hand at contributing to the community’s steady growth. The pop-up is also a platform for them to learn about the business-related side to creating and making a living through their shared love for art. 

When: Feb. 17, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

Where: HUB Make Lab, 413 Escolta St., Binondo, Manila

BLTX Year 15

Better Living Through Xeroxography (BLTX) is back for their annual small press expo, forum, and library. You can spend the weekend making zines, getting to know the country’s indie publishing collectives, and empowering alternative media outlets. The community fair has catered to writers, artists, and literary organizations nationwide who’ve used their platforms to speak up on pressing realities and their perspectives on today’s political climate.

When: Feb. 17, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. 

Where: Sikat Studios, Tomas Morato, Quezon City

Art by Ella Lambio

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Andrea Posadas: Andrea is a perpetual daydreamer who hopes to pack as many punches in her voice as there are in her words someday.