Alfred Martirez is an upcoming artist with a rather long list of art awards for a newbie. As he frequently bags titles from art competitions here and there (among them the PLDT 30th Visual Arts Competition and the 40th Shell Students’ Art Competition), it is easy to assume that he is simply a persistent young painter who seeks validation and legitimation; however, getting noticed is not Alfred’s motivation. At a young age, he understood how to make ends meet and pursue dreams while taking care of a father whose health led him to be the new head of the family. Being the keeper of the home and having sent himself to school to study Interior Design at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Alfred is receptive of how people’s lives are intertwined with objects in their households. An equal fascination with preservation of heritage and the potential of the youth to be part of its conservation adds a nostalgic and optimistic tone to his artworks. As a result, Alfred’s artworks offer to take us in deep thought about the interconnections of history, culture, education, the youth and institutions through seemingly mundane objects that actually pin us down to such concepts. Nostalgia and hope are two themes imminent in his compositions, luring us to survey the past and traverse the present with its realizations. Alfred’s current series delves into ordinary items that affect us quite greatly – a confrontation with the complication of the familiar and over-familiarity with the complicated. Set to actively engage in the art scene with several upcoming shows to mark his presence, with excellent skills and a penchant for thoughtful accounts of life, Alfred is one to watch out for in an upward direction of Philippine contemporary art.