Alemany Blvd. People’s Power Mural

LAKAS SAMBAYANAN (People’s Power)  1986
with Vicente Clemente and Presco Tabios.
300 Alemany Blvd. S.F.
(35’x80’) acrylic mural

This mural commemorates the 1986 revolution in the Philippines in which Marcos, dictator for 20 years, was ousted from power in a non-violent uprising. The mural shows the people in front of the military tanks, workers trapped behind sugarcane, a young girl scavenging on “Smokey Mountain”, a garbage dump, Cory Aquino holding her assassinated husband “Ninoy” with figures from protest movements behind her. The culture and history of the Philippines is depicted in the muslim gong and catholic christmas star and a figure on horseback , the famous revolutionary Gabriela Silang. The centerpiece of the mural is the stone head Marcos had built of himself in the side of a mountain blowing up with a torch of freedom and the symbol of the bird created by political prisoners of the Marcos regime, emerging. Commissioned by the San Francisco Mural Resource Center.

HERE LIES LOVE, a musical about the rise and fall of Imelda Marcos by David Byrne with Fat Boy Slim, opened at The Broadway Theater in NYC in June, 2023 and closed on November 26. This disco-like production with innovative moving stages and an all Filipino cast was controversial especially for those who suffered through the Marcos regime. That Bong Bong Marcos had recently been elected president is particularly ironic.  At the same time the production was explicitly anti-authoritarian and informative to the public who know next to nothing about Philippine politics and the United States colonial relationship to the Philippines. Lakas Sambayanan/ People Power Mural  appears in the last scene which is a thoughtful remembrance of the non-violent revolution that brought Marcos down.  An image of the this iconic mural was used as an opening night gift for the cast. This mural continues to have a life as a statement against authoritarian regimes.