Join Matt Manalo, the artist behind Philippine-Made, and the exhibition’s curator, Kathryn Hall, for an intimate walkthrough of an autobiographical body of work made from air-dry clay, bamboo, and plant materials with cultural ties to Manalo’s home country of the Philippines. Born in Manila, Manalo has spent exactly half his life in America—an experience that has served as a pivotal point of inflection for the artist. The exhibition encapsulates this important moment in Manalo’s life, while also giving visibility to the Filipinx community and confronting the colonial legacy that persists following America’s occupation of the Philippines from 1898-1946.
About Matt Manalo
Based in Houston, TX, Matt Manalo is a multidisciplinary artist who was born in Manila, Philippines. Incorporating raw materials and found objects, his environmentally conscious work tackles ideas surrounding his self-identification as an immigrant, along with his feelings of displacement and how the concept of home is defined. In his artistic practice, he addresses the physical and social structures of the Philippines and the United States, as well as the effects of colonization, including the erasure of histories and the presence of colorism.
Manalo holds a BFA in painting with a minor in art history from the University of Houston. He is the founder of Filipinx Artists of Houston, a collective of Filipinx visual, performing, literary, culinary, and multidisciplinary artists. He is also the founder of Alief Art House, a hub for creativity that highlights the cultural richness of the multiple communities of the Alief neighborhood in Houston. This alternative art space was made possible by DiverseWorks’ Project Freeway Fellowship. Manalo has received several other residencies, fellowships, and grants. Most recently, in 2022, he was awarded the Houston Inspira Storytellers Grant through the Houston Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs. He was also selected as a featured artist as part of Asia Society of Texas’ Artists on Site series. His work has been featured in numerous exhibitions, including the Blaffer Art Museum’s group exhibition, Carriers: The Body as a Site of Danger and Desire (2021), curated by Tyler Blackwell and Steven Matijcio, and the 2021 Texas Biennial: A New Landscape, A Possible Horizon, curated by Evan Garza and Ryan Dennis.