Topaz Arts presents Open Threads

TOPAZ ARTS, Inc. presents Open Threads
an exhibition by artists Ged Merino and Aze Ong
co-curated with Todd B. Richmond & Paz Tanjuaquio

on view September 16 to October 28, 2017
opening reception: Saturday, Sept. 16th, 3-6pm
closing reception: Saturday, October 28, 7-9pm

Thank you for join us for Open Threads at Topaz Arts – enjoy the photos!


Viewing hours: Saturdays 1-5pm or by appointment –
Special public programs and workshops will include the following activities:
Oct 21, 3-5pm – Workshop with Aze Ong: sharing of artistic process
Oct 28,
7-9pm – Closing reception with musical jam session among the exhibition

TOPAZ ARTS, 55-03 39th Avenue in Woodside, Queens, NY > directions

TOPAZ ARTS is pleased to present Open Threads – an exhibition by Ged Merino and Aze Ong – on view Sept 16 to Oct 28, 2017. There will be an opening reception on Saturday, Sept 16th from 3-6pm. Special public programs and workshops by the GedAze Project will occur on subsequent Saturdays from 1-5pm, please check for updates & schedule. Admission is complimentary.

Open Threads at TOPAZ ARTS features textile-based work by two artists, The GedAze Project, traversing a lineage of contemporary artists pushing the boundaries of textile. Together, both artists have a common thread – from materials and process, to their interest in engaging viewers to interact with the work – the tactility, both a reflection and reminder of familiar objects, and the stories bound within.

Philippine artists Ged Merino and Aze Ong have been engaging in a series of collaborations named The GedAze Project. TOPAZ ARTS provided a Summer Residency for the artists to create new work both individually and collaboratively. Open Threads is the culminating exhibition and is their fifth collaborative show.

Based in New York, Ged Merino collects objects, either discarded incidentally or intentionally. Living in NYC nearly half of his lifetime, Ged accumulated things and objects reminiscent of home. A realization came to him after spending several years in Manila working on projects, triggering an immediate reconnection with his roots and culture – most strikingly the contrast of poverty versus waste. Fascinated by the questions of why we buy and hold on to things, while some are thrown away – discarded materials eventually became his focus. Currently, Ged uses personal belongings and objects discarded by other people as his subject matter, a way of collecting artifacts from people’s lives, and repurposing materials into his artistic process.

Manila-based artist, Aze Ong is currently an Asian Cultural Council grantee, immersing herself in New York City and culture. The nature of her work involves a tedious process, spending countless hours crocheting pieces to assemble into larger installations. Armed with needle and yarn in hand, crocheting in parks, concerts, festivals, bus rides, subways and wherever she goes, unintentionally inviting conversations with onlookers, crocheters and curious folks – fascinated and empowered by the experience of engaging in natural conversations that have inspired her current process.

Open Threads exhibition includes a performance by Aze Ong during the opening at TOPAZ ARTS and a collaborative video presentation created with Ged Merino “New York Minute Performances” – capturing live performances by Ong in public spaces throughout NYC, seen moving within wearable art.


About the Artists:
Ged Merino (b. 1962) studied Bachelor of Fine Arts from PWU School of Fine Arts and Art Students League (New York). He represents Drawing Room Contemporary Art, Multiple Impressions (New York), Miriam Perlman Gallery (Chicago), Galeria Expreso del Arte (Bogotá, Colombia) and Turning Art. He was the recipient of numerous awards such as Best in Show in the Spirit of New Jersey (1991), Jackson Pollock Memorial Scholarship in Arts Student League, New York (1988), and Top Five in the ASEAN Youth Painting Delegation, Singapore (1987). Aside from local and international exhibitions, he has also been part of art fairs and biennales such as Artstage Singapore (2015).

Aze Ong (b. 1977) received her Bachelor of Communication in Media Production in Assumption College. She has exhibited in local and international galleries and museums, and her works have been part of the collections of Museo Pambata and Jeonbuk Museum of Art (Korea). She is an Asian Cultural Council Grantee (2016) and was named Solar Daybreak Artist of the Week (2014). She was featured in numerous media platforms (newspapers, magazines and TV shows), including BBC Brasil (2011) and the MAPEH on the Go10, the K to 12 edition textbook (2015).

TOPAZ ARTS, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts organization founded in 2000 by artists Todd B. Richmond and Paz Tanjuaquio. An artist-run creative development center, TOPAZ ARTS supports the creative process, offering public programs for contemporary performance and visual arts. For more details, please visit the website

TOPAZ ARTS, Inc. is made possible, in part, by public funds from the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and by the generosity of private individuals; TOPAZ ARTS Dance Programs are made possible by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency; The Mertz Gilmore Foundation; NYS DanceForce with funds from NYSCA Dance Program.

TOPAZ ARTS Visual Arts Program is made possible by TOPAZ ARTS, Inc. and by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.

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