Sinag: Ray Of Light

On view: April 26 – May 25, 2024

Opening Reception Friday, April 26, 5-8 pm RSVP

Web header image for "Sinag: Ray Of Light" exhibition, featuring two works (L to R): Geraldine Martinez Benz, "Huni"; Jessa Mendiola Mestiza, "The Life"

"Sinag - Ray Of Light” is a show featuring works of the Sinag Art Group, an art collective of 40 filipino-american artists based in greater Chicago. The art exhibit celebrates Filipino heritage and honors Filipino health care workers, especially against the backdrop of the pandemic and rise in Asian Hate Crimes. The exhibit participants are an exciting mix of established and emerging Filipino-American visual artists and writers showcasing traditional and modern art styles, using various media from acrylic on canvas to photographs on tarpaulin. 

SINAG: Ray of Light
Filipino visual artists are a conundrum. Being an artist, visual or otherwise, was never encouraged. Most Filipinos, including some
of our artists, are bi-vocational. They work in the medical fields and other professional jobs. It wasn’t too surprising to me that when I searched for Filipino artist group in Chicago three years ago, I couldn’t find any. Sinag, meaning a ray of light, was born out of curiosity and a need to connect. During the pandemic, I saw a a couple of calls for an art exhibit for Black Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) to push for diversity. Filipinos back in the Philippines mostly grew up living with limited resources, that is why it is inclucated in us to grab at opportunities. And this call was one of those. I did an online search for other Filipino artists in the area. And only one name kept pop-ping up-Cesar Conde. I sent a cold email not really knowing what the response would be since I was a stranger but I was thrilled that not only was he interested in joining but also generously connected me to other establised filipino american artists in Chicago and Greater Chicasgoland. I also contacted local Filipino artists through social media, directories, and word of mouth. From that point on, this ray of light has spread to other corners of the Greater Chicago area.

Since 2021, Sinag Artists have exhibited at the Zhou B Gallery, Evanston Arts Center, Coffee Lab, Rizal Center, Chicago Public
Library, and Epiphany Center. Sinag has also participated in local festivals and markets in Evanston and the greater Chicago area
such as The Umbrella Festival, Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Celebration, Tiyangge Day, and Manila Zoo Chicagoland. This also helped promote individual artists, with their works being exhibited and sold all throughout the area as well.

Sinag has members in different age groups, ranging from our elders to our youth. I am encouraged by the younger members who are eager to break the cycle, letting people know that there are Filipino before, Sinag’s members have also brought in new artists to encourage and grow the visibility of the group. Sinag has gone beyond my expectations and hopes the group grows even further!

-Geraldine Martinez-Benz
Founder, Sinag Art Collective - Chicago

Sinag Exhibiting Artists
Abby Mendoza
Alex Kostiw
Alyssa Marie Gayapa
Ashley Dequilla
Bueno Silva
Cesar conde
Cheri Tanamal
Christian Aggari
Elisa Boughner
Eric Magpantay
Geraldine Martinez-Benz
Illi Ferandez
Isobel O’Hara
Jacob Del Rosario

Jaden Angara
Jame Bulosan
Jantzen Loza
Jessa Mae Mendiola
John Rhys Garcia
Jose Aggari
Katriel Reception
Kevin Cuasay
Kristel Becares
Larry Leopoldo
Lea Rivera
Lisa Villa-Moser
Magdalena Arguelles
Marissa Domantay
Melissa Molitor
Mia Angara
Michael Oliveros
Michael Silva
Myra Kalaw
Nathalie Del Rosario
Patti Lorenzo
Peter Stover
Regin Igloria
Set Gozo
Susan Cua
Susan Silvano
Tita R. Brady
Viola Mayol
Zarina Docken

and a collaborative installation by a few Sinag members based on
the poem of:
Lani Montreal


This exhibition will be held in the First Floor Gallery of the Evanston Art Center (EAC). Masks are optional but strongly recommended for students, visitors and staff.

Gallery Hours

Monday–Thursday: 9am–6pm

Friday: 9am–5pm

Saturday–Sunday: 9am–4pm


Artwork sale proceeds benefit both the artist and the Evanston Art Center. If you are interested in purchasing artwork on display, please contact Emma Rose Gudewicz, Director of Development and Exhibition Manager, at [email protected] or (847) 475-5300 x 102.

This project is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency and EAC's general membership.

Artwork Pictured: Geraldine Martinez Benz, Huni; Jessa Mendiola Mestiza, The Life.