Style/Travel Diaries

Secret life of bees revealed in farm tour and exhibit

Visit a bee farm in Cavite, and listen to artist Issay Rodriguez's sound installations

Issay Rodriguez, DOON VR Project, 2020. Still. Participatory art project that uses AR and VR technology. Courtesy of the artist.

Bee There, a bee farm tour that takes guests on an informative journey on beekeeping and the motivations behind Filipino artist Issay Rodriguez’s bee-inspired sound installation, is a free event open to the public on May 15, 2023.

Filipino artist Issay Rodriguez

The bee farm, which is about a two-hour drive away from Manila, is in the heart of the Cavite State University (CvSU) Bee Research, Innovation, Trade, and Extension (BRITE) Center in Indang, Cavite.

It focuses on bee information, research, innovation, product development, trade, and mentorship of seasoned and budding researchers and extensionists. It serves as a significant learning ground for apiculture and meliponiculture.

The event begins with lectures by BRITE Center director Michele T. Bono and BRITE Center Extension and Training unit head Dickson N. Dimero, to give guests a comprehensive understanding of responsible beekeeping, breeding and management. They will introduce the different kinds of bees, and the diverse beekeeping products available.

The second phase will be the artist talk of Rodriguez, who will walk the visitors through the creative process of her work Song of Increase.

The sound installation, which is the musical humming of the bees at the Indang farm, was inspired by the 2016 book Song of Increase: Listening to the Wisdom of Honeybees for Kinder Beekeeping and a Better World by biodynamic farmer and natural beekeeper Jacqueline Freeman.

Issay Rodriguez, ‘Song of Increase,’ 2023, hive recordings and sound terminals

Rodriguez’s Song of Increase is exhibited at Museum of Contemporary Art and Design (MCAD) as part of the ongoing Adaptation: A Reconnected Earth. The show is an approach to determining the present within the realities of climate change, a planet in despair, and a humanity recently renewed.

Rodriguez’s recent projects and residencies include: Fête De la Science – MOI COMME MER: Hybrid Open Studio and VR Painting Workshop with Lycée René-Josué Valin and Centre Intermondes, La Rochelle, France (2022); Aquarium Poetry Workshop with the Association of Visual Arts Taiwan (2022); and Sacred Bee Open Studio with Gasworks, London Artist Residency Program (2022).

The activity was organized by MCAD of the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde (DLS-CSB) in partnership with the CvSU BRITE Center.

Bee There is free and has limited slots open to the public. It will be conducted on Monday, May 15, 2023.

Transportation will be provided. Participants must be at the Design + Arts Campus of DLS-CSB, 950 Pablo Ocampo Street, Malate, Manila, by 6:45 am.

Time will be allocated for breakfast and lunch, which will be shouldered individually.

Those who are interested may register through

For more information, email [email protected]

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