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Murals

EXPERIENCE

EDUCATION

Indoor & outdoor spray-painted and hand-painted murals

BFA in visual art with an emphasis in painting & drawing

My mural work explores themes of decoloniality, earth and water, climate justice,  Indigenous ways of knowing and liberation of the global majority. I gravitate toward combining the resistance roots of street art & graffiti and the conceptual nature of contemporary art. I'm interested in unconventional public art that asks challenging questions, pushes boundaries, rebels, evokes mystery and inspires.

If you'd like to explore my other artwork checkout Art

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Myth of Knowledge

Bekah Badilla

Spray painted and hand-painted indoor mural 

14’ x 29’

2021| Private Commission by Tech Client

 

Myth of Knowledge

MURAL

Artist | Concept through Installation

ROLE

WORK

"Myth of Knowledge" 

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"Myth of Knowledge" explores our relationship with the idea of knowledge. What questions arise when we challenge Eurocentric value systems as they relate to knowledge, education and information? How do we define these terms? Who and what holds knowledge? How does our perception of knowledge inform systems of power and oppression? How does the knowledge of Black, Indigenous and People of Color differ from that of Eurocolonial knowledge? How have these influenced U.S. educational institutions, curriculums, technology and research? 

 

In this piece, I drew conceptual inspiration from the native Paiute tribe’s accounts of Coyote drawings across the northwest of Turtle Island. These ancient drawings are considered sacred and often reside in valleys, caves, or other thresholds—sometimes near water sources or important landmarks. In the book Legends of the Northern Paiute, as told by Wilson Wewa, he notes that “...one day these writings may have something to teach us; but, for now, that knowledge is asleep.”

 

Knowledge and information has not always been owned, gained, consumed or capitalized on. We must hold respect for the different sources of knowledge, honor those who impart it to us, listen closely for how lessons are revealed, and be patient—maybe even wait thousands of years until our descendants have the eyes and ears to understand the lessons.

 

In the mural, a young boy encounters a great ancestor embodied in obsidian, flora and other elements of the land. The boy crouches in respect and humility toward the matriarch, as opposed to portraying a more domineering, possessive or aggressive nature often associated with masculinity. Other symbols associated with femininity are incorporated, such as flowers, plants and warm colors, bringing a soft and calming presence to the piece. By dismantling what is commonly valued by our society in the gender of a boy or man, and instilling lessons from the matriarch, we bring into focus a new lense for recognizing knowledge—devoid of patriarchy, white supremacy and capitalism. The circuit boards represent a modern symbol of knowledge, information, and technology. They are incorporated with the matriarch and the land, re-associating Womxn of Color with nature and technology—simultaneously and inherently rejecting the duality between the two.

 

This piece is one of two in my Myth Series, and fits among my other work in questioning the role of colonization in our value systems, particularly as part of the US American nation state, from a lense of de-colonial thought and revolutionary matriarchy. How do we look at the fabric of our paradigm and use these lessons to become aware, shift and re-member the values of the Indigenous self and the wisdom of the old universe? Visually, the piece was inspired by obsidian fields of Warm Springs, Paiute and Wasco land (A.K.A Central Oregon), as well as the sagebrush, catmint, and other flora of the area. Included is the Baybayin (Pilipino native script) that I use throughout my work, which reads “Lilipas din ito”, translating to “This too will pass.” 

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BEKAH BADILLA

BarterOnly

Spray painted indoor mural 

11'x9'

2023|Organized by East Village Walls

Lenapehoking

67 Eldridge St, Chinatown NYC

 

BARTER ONLY

MURAL

"Barter Only"

Artist | Concept through Installation

ROLE

WORK

"Barter Only" is an 11'x9' spray-painted mural created by Bekah Badilla in Lenapehoking | Chinatown, NYC, that depicts an iridescent purple and blue Deep Angler Fish with a glowing money sign as it's lantern. The "Moneyfi$h" is an extension of the "Moneyfi$h" street art series and is a character in Badilla's sub-reality universe "Greed Island".  The piece is a commentary on capitalism, material wealth and greed.

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Amnesia

Bekah Badilla

Spray painted outdoor mural 

10’ x 14’

Miccosukee and Seminole Land | Wynwood Arts District

Miami, Florida 2022

 

Amnesia

"Amnesia" 

Artist | Concept through Installation

ROLE

WORK

MURAL

This piece depicts a mother and son immersed in water and embodied in ice. The mother's eyes reflect a red sky and their bodies are connected. It continues themes of glacial ice, water, ecological grief and familial belonging. In a nation state obsessed with progress and cultural eraser, we've collectively been conditioned and forced to forget our histories and the wisdom of our ancestors. Forgetting is strategic, because if we forget, we can lose our power and our hope. 

 

There are many continuing the work of re-membering. Many reclaiming cultural and Indigenous belonging—unearthing wisdom lost to slavery, colonization and displacement. Our ancestors resisted and have passed down the wisdom—and we now continue to resist. It matters and it is powerful. We resist things like miseducation, assimilation and the separation of families. We resist by living and reclaiming joy, song, language and dance. We resist in our own ways, and we resist collectively. Resistance has always been there, often invisible, working and weaving between the seams like water, sometimes quietly and strategically and sometimes loud and confrontational. With this piece, I wanted to capture resistance that is maternal in essence—one that is domestic, caring and connected with the earth—one that often goes unacknowledged. It is strong, gentle and connected—wrapped in themes of cyclicality, physical strength, embodiment, birth and love. It unites humanity to fight the exploitation of people, land and resources. Thinking of my Lola, who lost one of her sons during the Japanese occupation of the Philippines. I used my sister and her son Kai as reference for the faces. I wanted to capture feelings of grief, broken embodiment and vigilance. Determined, reflective and powerful. 

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Born Again Babaylan

Bekah Badilla

Spray painted outdoor mural 

Paiute, Wasco and Warm Springs Territory

Bend, Oregon 2021

Born Again Babaylan 

"Born Again Babaylan" 

Artist | Concept through Installation

ROLE

WORK

MURAL

In collaboration with the High Desert Equality and Justice Mural Festival, "Born Again Babaylan" piece continues the dialogue regarding the Eurocentric value of "progress" that I began to explore with the mural, “Myth of Progress.” I ended up swapping these two names. After diving deeper into my Myth Series—the names seemed more appropriate this way. 

In this piece I wanted to move away from the problematic linear paradigm of “progress” and lean more into the values of my ancestors: cyclicality, reflection, preservation, restoration, healing, surviving, thriving, re-membering, revealing etc. Especially when it comes to justice—which is concerned with acknowledging and reconciling atrocities of the present and past and removing the systems in place to literally preserve the lives of Black and Brown people. Justice, liberation, equality, equity etc. are not nice "values" we all need to create a utopian future, they are a means to an end for BIPOC. They are necessary for our survival and our thriving. What was on my mind the most with this piece, is that justice begins with healing. Re-membering the histories of our families (the good and the bad), especially how patriarchy, white supremacy and capitalism have manifested throughout history and have deeply wounded us and mother earth. We have to reconcile these on a deeper more multi-faceted level—with our families, ancestors, communities, bodies, minds, spirits, and the land. Action is a given, how do we further embody justice and transform?

Melting out of the glacial ice is the spirit of a Babaylan and her descendants. Babaylan refers to the naming for a matriarchal leader, spirit guide and warrior prevalent in pre-colonial Philippines. The Babaylan is embodied in the ice, changing, shifting and eternally offering knowledge and guidance not through elitism and brute force but through spirituality, mysticism and ancestral strength. The values inherited from the Babaylan hold no consequential utility or materiality, and often carry no weight by American standards. Yet, it’s this same reason they have the power to transcend the linear and shed light on the nature of our present circumstances.

 

We see here three submerged womxn in ice and water, with the Babaylan re-manifesting with each generation. The vertical stacking of the womxn challenges the viewer to tilt their head and literally change their physical perception. Often the assumptions of what is good or beneficial to Black Indigenous and People of Color, such as assumptions as to what is just, equal and helpful to these communities is based on the view of the colonizer, even down to the very perception of time and history. We have to challenge these assumptions in society as a whole through listening to communities of color, re-membering his{her}story, and learning from the wisdom therein. 

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BEKAH BADILLA

Bartering Only

Spray painted indoor mural 

11'x9'

2023|Organized by East Village Walls

Lenapehoking

67 Eldridge St, Chinatown NYC

 

BARTERING ONLY

MURAL

"Bartering Only"

Artist | Concept through Installation

ROLE

WORK

"Bartering Only" is an 11'x9' spray-painted mural created by Bekah Badilla in Lenapehoking | Chinatown, NYC, that depicts an iridescent purple and blue Deep Angler Fish with a glowing money sign as it's lantern. The "Moneyfi$h" is an extension of the "Moneyfi$h" street art series and is a character in Badilla's sub-reality universe "Greed Island".  The piece is a commentary on capitalism, material wealth and greed.

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WORK

Artist | Concept through installation

ROLE

Mural “Myth of Progress”

Myth of Progress

MURAL

As history continues to be rewritten, science deepens age-old mysteries and violence and oppression persist in our society—the idea of “American progress” reveals its elusive nature as an ever-moving target trapped in linear time. In this piece, Badilla combines symbols of past, present and future—making the linear construct of time obsolete. Melting out of the glacial ice is the spirit of a Babaylan, a matriarchal leader, spirit guide and warrior prevalent in pre-colonial Philippines. The Babaylan embodies both technology and nature, offering knowledge and guidance not through elitism and brute force but through spirituality, mysticism and ancestral strength. A young girl is shown edified by her lineage and empowered to fight the battles of her time. The values inherited from the Babaylan hold no consequential utility or materiality, and often carry no weight by American standards. Yet, it’s this same reason they have the power to transcend the linear and shed light on the nature of our present circumstances.

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