After ABS-CBN was forced to abruptly go off the airwaves last Tuesday night, there came an overflow of support for the embattled network. While some followers were stunned into silence, baffled by the black void they saw on their TV screens and what it meant, others reminisced about the programs they grew up with. Still others were moved to create.
For example, visual artist and exhibitor Shannah Orencio decided to make use of petals and leaves to recreate the three rings and tower of the ABS-CBN logo. TV Patrol’s Kori Quintos, talked about Orencio’s choice of materials in last night’s newscast. Petals and leaves, according to the artist, continue to hold beauty and memory after they are plucked. A magna cum laude graduate from the University of the Philippines, Orencio makes use of different mediums and textures in her craft, and first exhibited at the Pinto Art Museum in 2017.
Marco Polo Cabrera, a multimedia producer and an artist who has been with the network for a decade, made use of paint to show his support. Instead of the tower that pierces the three rings in the ABS-CBN logo, a raised fist is at the center of his artwork.
Making use of a Procreate app, The Raya School teacher Pat Ramos depicted a student holding up a candle and standing on the three rings of the network in a digital logo. The learning institution describes itself as a “progressive school dedicated to helping children discover themselves, their roots, and the world around them.” Its seven point philosophy includes having a deep sense and love of country. School director Ani Almario told TV Patrol this includes loving Filipinos, democracy, and freedom of the press.
Other schools and universities, as well as student organizations around the country, are also standing with the network, and are condemning the shutdown. An Lantawan, the school publication of Leyte Normal University, put forth their own version of the ABS-CBN logo that features a broken chain, a microphone, and the words “defend press freedom.”
In a post, De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde School of Deaf Education’s version of the logo features a hand doing the sign language for love. “The network’s closure means fewer deaf-friendly news sources for the Filipino deaf,” it says in its Facebook post. “Watching news programs, particularly ones with Filipino Sign Language interpreting insets, has given us a semblance of security and a sense of comfort during this time of COVID-19.”
Many more artists have created works of support, which they have shared on their respective social media accounts: graphic artist Taki’s rendition shows a hand holding a microphone in chains as a way of saying the shutdown is an insult to our human right to express our views; In Paul M. Alfonso’s acrylic and paper creation, a hand grasps a ring of barbed wire and the ABS-CBN colors above the words “Sa Manlulupig, Di Ka Pasisiil;” Multimedia artist and director Ron Katagiri’s work shows a beaten, bound, and gagged man under the ABS-CBN rings.
Jake Amargo made use of a mobile drawing app to share his sentiments. In his post, a man in cuffs is silhouetted against fading ABS-CBN colors to portray the apparent sabotage on press freedom. Rappler web artist Raffy de Guzman has created both a still artwork and a GIF to show his stand; the former makes use of a spray paint effect, showing a hand holding on to a pen in front of the ABS-CBN rings while the latter had the usually bright logo slowly losing its colors.