Art gallery provides home for Filipino artists and storytellers, painting real-world situations

SAN PEDRO, CA — The cultural activist who started the Philippine Expressions Bookshop has made a new venture into art. The new Pinta Dos gallery has just opened up in Los Angeles, hoping to become the epicenter for Filipino visual artists, whose work tells stories of the past and present.

In the historic San Pedro district, Filipinos are the subject of art at the gallery Pinta Dos.

Here, Filipino artists will take turns holding two-month long gallery exhibits.

The name Pinta Dos pays tribute to what Spanish colonizers called tribal Filipinos who had many tattoos.

“We feel we have many good artists in the  community that needs a home. We have provided a home for Philippine writings; now our second step is to provide a home for Filipino and Filipino American artists,” said Linda Nietes.

The first featured artist is muralist Eliseo Silva.

“Our presence is important in the city and through art, we can tell our story,” Silva said.

While most of Silva’s art explores pre-colonial days and Philippine history, it’s also painting a picture of current situations in the Philippines.

“To connect it in context of whats going on now, it makes us part of the conversation. Visual art is like a universal access,” he said.

Silva’s collection will be on display until the end of July.

The eventually hope to create a demand for Filipino art, and eventually bring Filipino artists into mainstream museums.

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