A Bangus-themed Art Exhibit Set to Open at Gateway Gallery

The words “bangus” and “art” may not usually come together, but this April, different local artists will showcase how beautiful this humble fish could be.

Bang Bang Special Crispy Bangus, together with ArtShow Philippines and Gateway Gallery, is mounting a bangus-themed art exhibit which shall feature drawings, paintings, and sculptures inspired by the bangus. The show is entitled BANGUS ART: A Collective Art Exhibit on our National Fish and it will be open to the public on April 21-May 3, 2024 at The Gateway Gallery, 5th floor, Gateway Tower, Gen. Aguinaldo Ave. Araneta City, Quezon City.

“Eating bangus has been been part of Filipino culture for more than a century, and I’m sure that most of us have memories of eating bangus with our families. In this exhibit, our goal is to bring out an artistic and expressive energy on this fish, which has made our country proud all over the world,” shares Lucci Canlas, co-founder of Bang Bang Bangus.

The Philippines has always been one of the top producers and exporters of milkfish, or bangus, and its aquaculture has been around since the latter part of the 19th century. Though the bangus may be an unofficial national fish, it continues to be a staple in many Filipino households. Today, the bangus is not only enjoyed in the Philippines, but also by people in different parts of the world including Asia, Europe, Middle East, and America.

Aside from selling flavored fried bangus nationwide, Bang Bang Bangus also advocates local art. They believe that just like the bangus, Filipino art is also world-class.

“The intertwining of bangus and art aims to showcase how the milkfish can also be relatable to the younger generation, and thus encourage them to continue our tradition of eating bangus,” says Canlas. “We purposely scheduled the exhibit at this time, to promote and celebrate bangus in solidarity with the Bangus festival that shall take place in Dagupan this April.”

Just like the versatile bangus which could be cooked in a variety of ways—pinirito, inihaw, sinigang, paksiw, and baked among others—the works of art that will be featured in the Bangus Art exhibit shall also use different media and techniques. An array of sculptures and paintings made with oil, acrylic, mixed media, colored pencils, fused plastics, clay, metal, and other materials shall be showcased.

“Bangus is part of our culture and isn’t it just fitting to make artworks about it? These visual love letters are not just about the fish but a reflection of the stories involving it—may it be about a bountiful harvest, a shared meal among the family, or simply just a tribute to this beautiful fish,” says Canlas.

This homage to the bangus aspires to show how fun and enjoyable this subject could be. It wants to emit a vibrant and dynamic energy as it attempts to communicate through visual artistry.

How artistic can the subject of bangus be? This shall be revealed as the creativity and imagination of the fifty-three (53) local artists from Luzon and Mindanao take centerstage in this collective exhibit.