Yvonne Quisumbing is a multimedia artist based in Cebu. She is known in the fashion field–representing the Philippines at the Concours de Jeunes Creatur de Mode in Paris in 2001 and 2005; and with international awards that include: Japan Airlines Award in Makuhari Asian Fashion Competition, Osaka (1999); and grand prize in the Philippine Fashion and Design Competition for Apparel (2001) and Accessories (2005). She studied design, film and is currently taking her MFA. In her first solo show, Infernal Desire Machines (2005), the breadth of her skills is explored with a dynamic fusion of fashion, sculpture and painting to create wearable and interactive art.
Yvonne Quisumbing’s emergent is found in mobility. Wedged by high society on one side and a constructed “rural” idyll on another—a mapping of her usual movement reveals a defined pattern. The former (the center or Metro Manila) is where she attends to her fashion clientele; the latter is (the margins or her Cebu hometown) is where she designs and creates in her atelier. Inspired and critical of the spectacle that feeds her dominant, for which she is obliged to move back and forth, the artist found the in between itself as a necessary alternative space for recuperation.
In her narrative, the medium of paint and its attending long processes gives back the time lost in transit. This is the value of her art practice—in the pursuit of possibility/ies, with emphasis on uninterrupted temporal movement. Through a constant shuttling between her two work spaces due to demand and capital, Quisumbing has arrived at a realization that weight lies not in the commodity/finished product but in the continuing negotiation of value itself. This self-referentiality propels the artist to go beyond creating mere inspirations, detournements (parodies), et al, on her canvasses. Instead, Quisumbing’s paintings perform as thoughtful documentation and critique of a contemporary condition that reveals the instability of the image as mediator of social relationships, that ultimately comprise the spectacular/society wherein she operates.