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History in RGB: Tropical


History in RGB


History in RGB is an exploration of individual and collective history as viewed through multiple lenses. Representing images of history, popular culture, mythic folklore, landscapes, and creatures, History in RGB proposes alternatives to the systemic representations ordered by colonial narratives.


The installation consists of a series of wall-hung prints installed amid an installation of large tropical plants such as banana trees and snake plants, and ephemera of Filipino history – books, fabrics, fruit, etc. Upon entering the gallery, the viewer enters an environment of dense vegetation that is partially obstructing the prints hung on the perimeter walls. A stack of tinted color filters (red, green, and blue) akin to lighting gels are available, through which gallery visitors can view the surrounding prints.


Each print is a juxtaposition of images that have been stripped of color, then re-assigned with the value of a specific color based on a “tropical” Pantone palette. The re-assignment of color is based on the value system set by red, green or blue.  Viewing the print through one of the three filters, selected images become visible while simultaneously obscuring other elements. While the filters become tools for revelation and clarity for a monochromatic narrative, they also produce a mottled background by obfuscating the other narratives that exist on the same surface.

See also...History in RGB: Herebefore Thereafter (AOTEAROA)
Related Events


Interactive Workshop at Asian Arts Initiative in August 2018 and Oh, Snap! at Philadelphia Photo Arts Center in July 2019

I lead workshops in which participants will get a glimpse of my method and engage in a process of understanding color interaction and relativity. Using assorted color papers and filters, images, and words, the participants will collaborate on a collage that their individual and/or community’s visibility and invisibility in/within Philadelphia.

Merienda: Pinoy Potluck at Kuwentohan at Vox Populi Gallery in April 2018

At the closing reception of the exhibition, I co-hosted, along with writer, Juliana ReyesMerienda: Pinoy Potluck at Kuwentohan. About 50 people attended the potluck, including many Filipino-Americans, during which we shared memories, stories, and food from different regions in the Philippines, as well as with other immigrants and children of immigrants from other countries.

I presented "History in RGB: Individual and Collective History Viewed Through Multiple Lenses” at the 2018 Society for Photographic Education (SPE) Annual Conference in Philadelphia, in the session, Dialogic: MATERIALITY. 

Selected Press

3 must-see new art exhibits this month: Our picks from ‘First Friday’ – Through May, 2018

Layers of narrative in Maria Dumlao’s “History in RGB” at Vox Populi Gallery

The Galleries at Moore: Moore on Artists: Maria Dumlao

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