What is VIVA ExCon?

VIVA Excon is an artist run and organized biennial, founded by the Black Artists in Asia (a collective formed in the 70’s of seminal Filipino contemporary artists).

Designed as both an exhibition and conference, the exhibition component of VIVA EXCON I, was meant not only to “showcase contemporary works of visual arts from the different islands but also to promote visual art forms reflective of the islands’ cultural influences, historical traditions and current social situations aside from encouraging innovative, experimental or collaborative works among Visayan visual artists” (VIVA EXCON Folio, 1990).

On the other hand the conference component was meant to provide “a mechanics for the discussion and assessment of parallel artistic development in the islands, give an opportunity for analyses of academic theories and other relevant issues and serve as the context for a better understanding of various aspects of contemporary art practices.” It was likewise meant to provide a “historical perspective on the various art and craft traditions of the islands and generate resolutions” (VIVA EXCON Folio, 1990).

Up to today the organizers integrate the components exhibition and conference in the biennale.

It continues to be the main goal of VIVA ExCon to celebrate Visayan art by bridging the islands of the Visayas so as to provide a venue to facilitate dialogues, interaction, networking and cultural exchanges, thus addressing fundamental and relevant issues among visual art communities and related stakeholders.

Source: VIVA ExCon Organization


The Visayas Islands Visual Arts Exibit Conference (VIVA ExCon), the only art biennale in the Philippines that began in 1990, will be held on 17-20 November 2016 in Iloilo City. Like in the previous years, VIVA ExCon 2016 aspires to gather as many artists from the Visayas regions and welcomes guest artists from various parts of the country and the world.

VIVA ExConIloilo 2016 will put on four exhibitions in different venues: the UPV Art Gallery, Museo Iloilo, and, the UP Visayas Auditorium. Lectures on contemporary art practices, artist talks and, workshops are also slated during the four – day event.