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Date [ 2013-12-27, 06:26 ]

This multifaceted artist was in Kuala Lumpur recently to participate in various art events.


(Kuala Lumpur=Koreanpress) by Ramani Rathir = One of which was Art Expo Malaysia 2013.  Okay, let us start with name first. His real name is Omar Ramos and he adapted the name because he used to live in a dangerous, gangster-riddled area of Manila. “Anytime you feel threatened, all you had to do was holler ‘Whooop! Whooop! And you were left alone,” explained the artist.

He went on to adopt ‘Whooop’ as his name since he felt it protected him from harm and was representive of street art. Earlier on, despite realizing the hardships he would face as a painter, he side-stepped his degree of Fine Arts in Advertising Arts from the Far Eastern University of Mnaila.. “I decided to become a full-time artist,” he quiet;ly revealed.

Today, Whooop has already established himself in installations, graphic art, t-shirts, art toys designer, print arts and of course paintings. Add to that his multimedia skills and you have someone living quiet comfortably. Not your usual starving artist type.

It was around this time that he found a new passion – street art. It happened in 2006, when a small group of people decided to form a group called Pilipinas Street Plan.

These set out to elevate graffiti, to street art with installations, paste-ups, sticker art, stencils and just plain paint brushes!. The aim was to take art to the common people, people who would walk by the street artists’ paintings each day.

Whooop emphasized,”I took my multimedia knowledge to the streets and with my work on street art, helped formulate my current style of painting. Because of this, I indeed have a very high respect for street art.”

He explains his style as character designing. He bases each of his character on an actual person, a group of people, or events that he has witnessed. His work is a reflection of his own personal experiences in life – the good and the bad! They touch on a mix of Filipino popular cultural elements, American pop art with Hispanic and Chinese backgrounds.

With recognition of his works, Whooop has gone on to participate in various art exhibitions and events in the major museums and cultural centres of the Philippines. Of particular interest was his one man show at the Secret Fresh gallery in Manila recently.

And of course the Art Expo Malaysia in September 2013. He goes on for an exhibition at Cutlog in Paris. That is a long way from the streets of Manila and indicates the success the artist is now enjoying. abc@koreanpress.net

The artist working on the street

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