Cisco Merel Choy
(Panama, b. 1981)
Cisco Merel Choy and Rosendo Merel Choy are two brothers of Chinese descent who joined forces to work on the #PANACHINA project. Their grandfather arrived at the port of Colón, Panama, in the 1930s from Guangdong, and the Merel Choy brothers were brought up with Chinese traditions.
Participating in the inaugural #PANACHINA exhibition in 2014, they created a mixed-media video installation titled Máscara china, in which moving colored lights were projected over a Chinese dragon mask, creating a visual evocation of the brothers’ experience of the Chinese New Year celebration in Panama.
Merel Choy, one of Panama’s most esteemed young artists, began as an urban graffiti artist known for his visual interventions, which were rich in color and based on principles of geometric abstraction. He graduated with a degree in photography from the Universidad de Arte Ganexa, Panama, and has had residencies at the Global Fresh collective in New York, 2009; Pilotenkueche in Germany, 2011; and at the Articruz workshop in Panama, 2014-2017, under the mentorship of Carlos Cruz-Diez. In 2017 he was invited to participate in the exhibition Circles and Circuits: Chinese Caribbean Art at the Chinese American Museum in Los Angeles.