The Foundation Centre

 

2012

The Foundation Centre is a reflection upon edificial architecture, and an attempt to conflate a perceived parallel between two specific narratives that resonate as particularly emblematic of a period of Philippine cultural development and foundation. 

The first is the story of the collapse of key scaffolding during the construction of the Froilan Hong-designed Manila Film Centre — in preparation for the inaugural Manila International Film Festival — resulting in the reported live burial and subsequent death of at least 169 labourers in quick-drying cement. The second, somewhat inverse, narrative is that of the steadier structural decline of the mausoleum of the embalmed and unburied former President of the Philippines, Ferdinand Marcos. 

The works here utilise the foundation form of architectural construction as a sculptural container. Their dimensions and proportions are based upon those of Marcos' sarcophagus, while polyurethane expanding foam — another construction material — forms a hybridised stuffing of metaphorical cement and flesh. Other materials, such as silicon and skin-whitening soap, allude to human tissue and skin.

The Foundation Centre is thus posed as a sculptural meditation upon architectural, political and funerary stasis.