Bye bye, Major Dizon!

Two years in the life of LOSTprojects

LOSTprojects is putting a cornerstone on the first stretch of its history! In the last two weeks of May 2012, we’ve wrapped up all the works in stock, assembled the movable panel against the wall and saw that the bathroom behind it can pass as an awesome set for a horror blockbuster. Two years down the road we are exhausted, fulfilled, grateful with all the people we’ve worked with and encountered, and most of all surprised at the angel-headed monster LOSTprojects turned out to be! The space has become bigger than we imagined, and the surplus of it outweighed the pragmatism often uncharacteristic of an art space.

As much as its life in 18A Major Dizon Street (between the Barber and the Butcher shop, across the street from Nativity of Our Lady Parish Church) centrifugate around opportunity, us two are conscious of a different response necessary to the present time. After all, the conception of LOSTprojects was at a time when the market has spun the local community out of control and provided very little space for artists who wanted to pursue work beyond what could feed it. Even though it has only been two years, Manila has moved on (as it always does every six months) – more spaces have been available for project-based inclinations, while more models of production and presentation are being explored.

LOSTprojects as we’ve known it in 18A Major Dizon is closing, and also moving on. As a wrap up of our last two years, and as we begin a new one, we give you points of report:

June 2010 – LOSTprojects was an invited participant and the first Manila art space to be in VOLTA6, Basel. At that time, we called it an “imaginary space.” Through it all, we do not forget that imaginary space means that it is virtual, and that it is a platform that existed and could operate beyond a particular site.
First event – Studio Residency

The rest that is history
2010 – Residency 1 + Exhibitions 1 & 2 (#2 being the first Australian show)
2011 – WAS MINDBLOWINGLY PACKED!!! Residency 2, 3, 4, and Studio Residency of collaborative tandem for their Jakarta Biennale work + Five exhibitions, 1 Preview + Offsite group show in Melbourne + Participation in Asian Arts Space Network in Gwangju
2012 – Guest Curators for Exhibitions 8 and 9

Keywords to LOST
Privately funded by the Founders, Australia-Manila exchange, Informal consultation to overseas network, Meeting place, By Appointment, Commercial only if there is an opportunity, Dialogues, Exhibitions and residencies by invitation only, Founders are the Directors are the Managers are the Logistics are the Clean-up Crew

Get it straight
*We’ve become to be known to program bad[ass] art? Truth: LOSTprojects have accommodated artists who investigate their positions within artistic formats of painting, sculpture and photography.
*There is an honorarium for the artist-in-residence? Truth: LOSTprojects only provided the space and its network to the professionals we work with.
*We are a space you can send proposals to? Truth: Our audience, and the artists, curators and clients we worked with operate on a direct relationship with us. We’ve pursued a program based on how much we know of an artist’s overall practice.
*LOSTprojects is primarily a commercial gallery? Truth: The space is interested in artist processes and projects. We are not driven to discover or provide a new batch of “up and coming” individuals for the market. We’d rather have artist pursue “lost” projects – series and works that artists cannot otherwise present to local commercial galleries. We believe in the care of a client base that is not made up of accumulators. Hence, the collectors that we have have shown genuine interest and relations. LOSTprojects wanted to do it right – every marketing opportunity involved transparency with the artist and dialogues aimed for trust with the collector. Above all, we wanted work that satisfies the artist’s practice and work that is not compromised for a speculative client base.

The Future
LOSTprojects is conscious of an art space being a work-in-progress itself. We are aiming to re-open with a program that will be complementary again to what is necessary in the community. In the same vein, we do not want our structure as a platform to be forgotten again – that LOSTprojects was created outside a physical site and can continue to take different forms (non-site or virtual or network-based or an actual location) based on the most tenable and accountable response to how the community navigates around the bigger picture.

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In the span of two years, we’ve made so many new friends and advanced old relationships and we are grateful for the community they have made for LOSTprojects. Thanks to the artists who have generously given their time and shared their practices, to the bighearted artists who donated works for the LOST and Fund(hell)raiser event, the collectors who chose to engage in continuous dialogue with us, the friends who stayed ‘till closing time, the friends who filled up the space with good spirits and our professional network who believed that we are more than just Small Fish.


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