Fotomoto 2022 features Jilson Tiu’s photos of home 2
Detail of one of Jilson Tiu's photographs to be exhibited as part of Fotomoto 2022.

In this year’s Fotomoto festival, Jilson Tiu’s pictures reflect on finding home on the road

One of his generation’s most followed photographers is featured in a special section of the country’s premier photography festival
Jilson Tiu | Nov 09 2022

Manila is my sprawling playground for personal photography work. I chase the lights from one LRT station to another during rush hour, stopping at every station to observe how the lights illuminate, as the density of people fill my frame.

In the year 2020, Taal volcano erupted, ushering in the facemask era that continued throughout the pandemic. Covid-19 changed the way we lived for two years, as we spent time mostly at home: for work, play and daily living. Companies and establishments adapted for the better or for the worst, and our memories were captured by the most accessible camera– our phones. 

Photo by Jilson Tiu
Photo by Jilson Tiu. Courtesy of Fotomoto.

With the advance of technology, phones now rival the quality of professional cameras. Most importantly, phone cameras can capture more intimate scenes. They are user-friendly and entail less technical details to think about, thus we have the convenience and immediacy to record what is right there.  

Photography for me today is about a unique perspective, as every individual sees the world differently. Everyone can now be a photographer, which is a good thing because the common practice of this democratic medium teaches visual literacy to the general public and brings a deeper understanding of our visual culture. Phones hold personal photos, especially images that others have less access to: of private lives at home. 

Jilson Tiu for Fotomoto 2022
Photo by Jilson Tiu. Courtesy of Fotomoto.

On November 19, Fotomoto will be launching an exhibition with the theme of "Home," organized through an open call of photo-based work from professional and amateur photographers, artists and hobbyists. The goal is to present multiple and complex definitions of home, the story of each participant. 

For my special part in the exhibition, I will be presenting images of the long commute home at day’s end. The phrase “On the way home” is a text we often send to our loved ones as we go our separate ways after work, parties or any adventure. But for some, home is always being on the road. My exhibit is about finding one’s way home, shifting roads, being stuck in reverse, chasing lights and bustling among crowds as we travel home. In the end, I am still on my way home.

Photo by Jilson Tiu
Photo by Jilson Tiu. Courtesy of Fotomoto.

Fotomoto’s 2022 edition opens on the 19th of November at the Parola UP Fine Arts Gallery, University of the Philippines Diliman. This year, the festival called for photographs that gave meaning to the word “home.” The winning entries will be on exhibit beginning November 19 and will end on December 9, 2022. 

For more information, visit Fotomoto on Instagram and Facebook