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Japanese artist takes root in the Philippines; explores folk spiritual practices

April 6, 2020

Kanade Yagi came to Cebu, in the central Philippines, only to study English in 2013.
A visual artist, she had set her eyes on Europe where she planned to explore opportunities and hone her craft. But fate had other plans for the Saitama-born Japanese. On vacation in Manila, she met up with artists whose ideas about art and its role in society she shared.
And so she she stayed on and has since taken deep roots in the country.
Her first project was a sculpture called the Escolta Biennalle which is kept lock and key at the First United Building, in Escolta, Manila, where it is displayed for only one day every two years.
Yagi went on to create more art works, focusing on Filipino spiritual healing practices since 2016. It was Filipino national artist Guillermo Tolentino who inspired Yagi to take a deep dive into the ways of the Filipino healers in Siquijor, Roxas, and Iloilo.
Her latest work, entitled “The Probability – neither yes or no –“, was exhibited at the Bulwagang Amorsolo at the Cultural Center of Philippines in May 2019.
Yagi is now pursuing her research into folk healing. Although she still wants to go to Europe, she considers the Philippines as a base where she can sharpen her craft.

Camera and Video Editing: Anto Balleta
Interview and Text: Virgilio DC. Galvez
Photos on Yanagi’s Escolta Biennale sculpture from https://www.facebook.com/98Bcollabora…