The World of Angelica So and Bunny 

The artist.

When Angelica So was younger, one saying had stuck out to her. Left out of conversations among the adults, her ears would perk up nevertheless to the expression “don’t eat where you leave your dirty laundry”. Finally, one day, she plucked up the courage to ask her mom, dad, and uncle what it meant. “They laughed and told me… I didn’t understand it though, since I was just 7.”

It would take a few more years before the saying would become meaningful for So. Her mother would be the one to remind her about it this time, entrusting the maxim to her as she warned her: “it’s a real mean world out there.”

Still more years after, So holds onto the maxim, memorializing its importance to her especially in her piece ‘I was told not to play with the tell-tail sprites from Tell Tale’. The piece, which is part of the Cartellino group show Serious Play, is a gentle caution against involving oneself in gossip and revealing secrets. So notes that beside being scary, the world we share is small—what we can keep to ourselves, we ought to keep to ourselves, lest they come to be used against us, or warp people’s perception of us. “It's a great advice,” she says, “especially now that we're all taking a beating from adulting.” 

Although we need to draw the boundaries between where we eat and where we keep our dirty laundry, So nevertheless stresses the importance of community and fostering connections to her, and the central role it takes in her artistic practice—something the artist has embodied with her signature character, Bunny. Inspired by some of her favorite characters growing up, So’s red-eyed familiar, who pops up in many of her works, also came about from her interest in the animal’s symbolic meaning across cultures. Besides being a symbol for fertility, bunnies can represent creativity, rebirth and new beginnings, compassion and unconditional love, resurrection, and being a mother, a daughter and a healer. “All of these things that are kind, soft, and warm are symbolized by this tiny creature,” So says, reflecting on how she resonated with it as a mother, lover, sister, and daughter. “I found out that it’s in my nature to nurture and spread light to the people I love, and to do so through my art.” Bunny, then, became the bearer of that light, sharing it to viewers along her adventures. Even such shaky adventures as Tell Tale. She writes:

I was told not to play with the tell-tail sprites from the village of Tell Tale.

And if you're wondering, it's in the south of West Carrot Lane.

I was told, they're mischievous little tricksters and that they sometimes tell lies.

And if you try to play with them, they might make you cry.

I was told, they're often naughty and like to play rough.

And if you want to play with them, you need to be tough.

I was told, they also live and thrive in other places.

And if you see one, you should learn how to evade them.

I was told, from time to time we might have the "tell-tail sprite encounter".

But that's okay, not all days are summer.

(Angelica So 09/19/2023)


An avid storyteller, So is also among the forerunners of emerging art forms exploring the possibilities with NFTs and augmented realities in the country. Previous works of hers have leapt out of the traditional canvas, and the artist continues to promote the mediums for extending storylines and expanding one’s imagined world. Bunny’s story, likewise, continues to unfold with more adventures lined up in the new year. 


Angelica So joins BITTO, Cholo Cardenas, Rachel Anne Lacaba, Littlespaceboi, Naburok, and Karyl Nerona in the group show Serious Play, which runs from November 7 to December 7.

About the artist

Angelica So is a multidisciplinary artist based in Quezon City, Philippines, whose work spans a wide range of media, including painting, sculpture, fibre art, digital art, and augmented reality. With a focus on world-building and storytelling, So's work often features her original character, Bunny, and explores themes of morality and personal growth. Her vibrant and colorful pastel palette is a hallmark of her work, bringing a sense of joy and playfulness to her often thought-provoking pieces. So received her formal training at the Mapua Institute of Technology, where she studied Multimedia Arts and Sciences. Since then, she has been constantly pushing the boundaries of what art can be and exploring new ways to engage with her audience through her diverse practice. Through her work, So invites viewers to step into her whimsical and thought-provoking world and explore the deeper questions of life that her art seeks to answer. Her works have been showcased both locally and internationally.