SAN FRANCISCO – Manila-based painter AB Paredes made her US debut with a two-week art show in San Francisco.
The 33-year-old Pinay titled her show "Salamandering Circus Freaks" and it is on display at the Goforaloop Gallery & Studios in the Mission District.
People from all over have come to marvel at her contemporary paintings. Her art is a representation of her connection to the water from growing up in the Philippines.
"I’m super inspired by the ocean," Paredes said. "I mean I'm from the Philippines. We are an archipelago island nation and I love the water. The ocean is amazing and I’m in the water a lot, and when you’re down there you see species that people are still discovering.”
Paredes also wants the new generation of Filipino artists to make their own mark.
"Back home they like to do a lot of propaganda art, very symbolic," Paredes said. "This is nothing against them or criticism against them. But for me, I think Filipinos should have a contemporary voice, something fresh, something that’s just theirs so without too much thinking about it, not too much politics. My stuff is more emotional.”
San Francisco has become a more special location for Paredes because it gives her the opportunity to be close to loved ones.
"Anxious, but super excited because some of my friends are from San Francisco," Paredes said. "I haven't seen them since the third grade. Half of my grade school class, they all live here. They’ve lived here for maybe two decades so it’s also a reunion. I get to see family, the familiar faces again. It’s really important."
Despite the anxiety of being an up-and-coming artist, Paredes is making sure she’s enjoying every minute.
"Following your bliss brings you to places like this and you’re happy all the time even if you’re super nervous or stressed out and it’s just good to be here," Paredes said.