At the end of a narrow, dark walkway near a busy street in Makati is a brightly lit room filled with naked women.
It is Saturday night and in a span of two hours, men and women climb the stairs to see the muses in their naked glory.
The women are seen through the lens of photographer Mitch Mauricio and in between the threads of illustrator and tattoo artist Wiji Lacsamana in a collaborative exhibit, Karesinda.
Karesinda is the caress, the seeking of self-awareness through sexual exploration, specifically the sexual exploration of the female self. “Stories about the sexual miseducation of my female friends and relatives made me realize there is something important to say,” Mauricio says in the exhibit statement.
Lacsamana, in the same statement, says: [I have always been interested in] ‘womanity,’ which entails the beauty of being a woman: the sensuality and the strength of womenfolk.”
Those who came to see vaginas and pink-colored nipples, however, did not see any because these were concealed in Lacsamana's kaleidoscope of bright threads. The juxtaposition is compelling -- a fitting tribute to the enigma of being a woman and indeed "an insidiously disturbing mix that forces the viewer to come to terms with women’s desires."
The impact of the visual experience resonates far beyond what the naked eye can see. Mitch hopes that through her images, women will get the message that we own our sexuality.