Kaugnayan n. 1. relation; 2. association; 3. connected
This project began with my research into Philippine motifs and patterns by way of textiles, pottery and the tattoo culture. Patterns that convey meanings for an individual or a community.
I put the pen to paper and experimented with just a few motifs and eventually narrowed it down to two patterns. Motifs which conveyed community and being connected with one another, and yet allowing that piece to stand on its own as an individual.
If you’ve followed my work for a long time, I’m really known for my work with Baybayin, the Philippine script. While that has been a great success, I wanted to diversify and add to my body of work. By using the same craft methods as my pendants and create something totally different. So from pen to paper, I’ve taken it to wood burning tool to bamboo. The result, something uniquely Malaya Designs.
This pattern is just one of several that represent “Minamata”, representing the eyes of the ancestors keeping watch. Placed next to one another, in whatever orientation, it becomes a part of a larger motif. It becomes a pattern that is similar to a woven basket or even a mat. Each piece is an individual but is a part of a larger community of pieces and other people. There lies our association with one another, of being connected.
The Ten pictured above are my newest addition to my project and are the very first made. What makes these different is that these are smaller pieces than those I developed in the late summer of last year. Measuring about 1″ X 1″ square bamboo pieces. Handcrafted from the same bamboo stalk, wood burned: and finished with a sliding, adjustable 2mm black cotton cord, a wooden bead locked in place with a specialty knot original to a Malaya Designs piece. These Ten are also signed, dated and numbered 1-10 and are ready for prime time.