Leeroy New (b. 1986, General Santos City) is an artist-designer whose practice overlaps and intersects with different creative industries. Originally trained as a sculptor, but because of the company he keeps, he has dabbled significantly in production design, costuming, and performance. This inclination to move from one mode of creative production to another has become the spine of his practice driven by concepts of world building and hybrid myth-making.
What resulted were immersive installations that use a variety of found objects directly sourced from the material culture of his current
environment. His Balete series, for example, using industrial pipes weaved using plastic ties into large-scale forms and environments, began as a casual experiment during a residency where, due to lack of funds, he discovered piles of discarded irrigation hoses in the local recycling centres. Through his collaborations with local performers, he was able to transform these same materials into set pieces and even wearable sculptures culminating in a cyber-site series called Aliens of Manila, which documents alien characters inhabiting Manila’s often harsh yet colourful streets.
Among his current projects is the development of a floating performance space/garden, a collaboration with urban planner-designer Julia Nebrija, which was floated down Manila’s central and most polluted waterway: the Pasig River. The mobile installation is the first phase for this long-term project that explores ecological heritage and challenges local perspectives of urban space, and revives the Pasig River as public space, transport corridor, and sustainable environment through creative intervention.