Trips on the Úlnas

(February 23, 2005 to May 23, 2005)

The Ilocano all-around sled.

Farming is the mainstay of the Ilocanos, with rice as the principal source of livelihood and economic stability.  To maneuver tools, supplies and harvest in the muddy pagtatalonan. (rice fields), the farmer deviced  an all-purpose utility sled of wood and bamboo: the ULNAS.  It was hitched to the farmer’s best friend, the NUANG (carabao or water buffalo).  The more remote farms sometimes used the sled as an ambulance and why not, even as a bridal car.

The familiar sight of the farmer riding into the sunset on his carabao with the ulnas in tow is fast disappearing.  The noise of the motorized, more efficient and carabao-less kuliglig is getting more and more incessant.

This exhibit hopes to give the ulnas a place in the living memory of the Ilocanos.

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