An excerpt from the artist Jimmie Durham’s work in This Long Century:
I’ve written a poem about the Filipino artist, Santiago Bosé who seemed irresistible to all women and wanted to love them all.
SANTIAGO BOSE’S POEM
Far in the (not really so cold!) north of Norway
But not yet Karasjok where I hope to go
Next year, I was not shocked but struck;
Surprised by a display of woodcut prints
By John Savio. “John?” I asked
Myself, “Why isn’t he called ‘Jan’ or ‘Johan’
Or even something close to the Cherokee
I want to ask Santiago Bosé.
In the whole world, not only the South Pacific,
There is no Santiago Bosé.
Santiago Bose’s first exhibit at the University of the Philippines! Abababa!
For the commemoration of Santiago Bose’s 10th year death anniversary, Can’t Go Back Home Again, Santiago Bose in the Family Collection brings out artworks, illustrated journals, footage of interviews, and documentation from the collection of Bose’s family. Some of the works and memorabilia included in this exhibit have never been seen by the public. Bose, known for his experimentation in various media, pioneered the use of local materials in his artworks. In the words of Alice Guillermo, “Santiago Bose has been called the Anting-anting Maker … His art practice is based on the assumption that the work is not a painted illusion on a surface, but a concrete substance that undergoes the hectic process of becoming a charged material sign capable of holding within itself the tensions of conflicting forces … Bose brings out these political tensions”. This is his first exhibition at the University of the Philippines where he took up Fine Arts.
In 1995, I was obsessed with No Doubt. I wore bindis like Gwen Stefani, I tried to dress like Gwen Stefani, I watched that “Don’t Speak” video CONSTANTLY, I wanted to sing like Gwen Stefani. Today OC Weekly published my cover story on No Doubt. If it was 1996 it would’ve been like my biggest dream had been realized, but I’m 17 years older. So much is different — my priorities, my energy, my musical taste. Oddly enough, that’s also what I discovered about No Doubt. They’re older, wiser, with different priorities. To celebrate the fulfillment of a dream (however deferred) I watched “Don’t Speak” really closely tonight. The realness and the raw emotion in that video … I choked up and felt 17 again.
In the Philippines I knew I was a tiny speck of nothing when I faced the sea. Here, the beaches are too full — of people, of things, of surfers — I could never find that finite sense of my self with a banana stand and a lifeguard post around. But I found that feeling in the high desert.
When Jah arrived from a week in Milwaukee without both his parents, he was not happy. He cried when he saw me at the airport, angrily, then reached for his nanny. He’s never going anywhere without us again.
I was missing Jah so badly today, and I realized this must be how parents feel all the time when their children are away. It’s a sick, queasy feeling coupled with an emptiness that distracts you into trying to start everything and finishing nothing.