By Martin Sadongdong
An artist from Las Piñas City bagged the top prize in the seventh Manila Bulletin (MB) Sketch Fest held at Seaside, Mall of Asia (MOA) in Pasay City Monday, National Heroes’ Day.
With the theme “Unity in Diversity,” Teodelorenz Racuya symbolically represented the struggles of every Filipino in his masterpiece “Iaba-iba Ngunit Sama-Sama” showing five persons doing a traditional Pinoy game.
Racuya said: “Itong artwork ko madaling basahin lang ng public at mga judges. Kung anong makita mo ayun na. Dito makikita mo sa nilalaro nila na may unity para maabot yung goal. So it’s a test of unity (This artwork is easy to read. What you see is what you get. You can see here they are playing a game, they need to be united to achieve their goal. So it’s a test of unity),”
Racuya said he personally experienced the traditional team wooden race in a church team-building activity in Laguna way back in 2012.
He said the artwork is really special among other creations because of the virtues it embedded: happiness, peace, love, faith and hope.
“So kapag nagtulung-tulong lang tayo gamit ang mga virtues, sa kabila ng pagkakaiba, makakamit natin ang tagumpay bilang isang bansa (If we just help each other out with the help of the virtues, despite our differences, we can be triumphant as one nation),” he said.
The 41-year-old full-time artist bested 163 other exhibitors, winning the first place in the exhibition category. He received P50,000 and an MB loot bag containing various special items.
The second place was captured by Donnie Rick Cellano, Junevy Llosa got the third place and John Raymond Guevarra settled for fourth place. They received P30,000’ P20,000 and P5,000 respectively.
MB executive vice president Sonny Coloma said that the event turned out to be successful as it completely showcased the varying opinions of the artists in relation to the theme.
“Talagang napakamalikhain nila (They were truly artistic) and the way they portrayed their opinions and emotions into their arts showed we have a bright future sa ating (in our arts), he said.
Aside from 164 exhibitors, the event also gathered 1,266 participants in the Seniors, Juniors and Kiddies categories.
Janus dela Cruz, a 31-year-old visual artist, painter and printmaker and one of the judges in the exhibition category, said the winning masterpiece represented something that is idealistic, very simple yet had all the q elements to explain the struggles of a Filipino identity and progress.
“Using the theme ‘Unity in Diversity,’ I chose the artwork which best showed the idea of nation building and uniting people even from diverse background. I wanted to find an artwork which represents the idea that although we came from different islands with different culture and traditions, we all have one blood which binds us all together to be Filipinos,” dela Cruz said.
He said the future of arts seems bright with the showcase of talents he witnessed.
“I’m very optimistic with the turnout of the event. You know, Filipinos are very innately creative and we need outlets to showcase our talents, like these events, to be able to create and out of the creations maybe we can change our community and the nation for the better,” he remarked.
Winners in seniors’ category or those 19 years old and above: Kirby Yaneza, first place (P30,000); Joemari Dinson, second place (P15,000); and Christian Jame Maglente, third place (P10,000).
In Juniors’ category or those 13 to 18-years-old, winners were: Geoffrey Solidum, the first place (P10,000); Trisha Danielle Sia, second place (P7,000); and Gaile Nicole Vargas, third place (P5,000).
Winners in the Kiddies’ category or those 12 years old and below: Jaliyah Maninang, first place (P5,000); Ma. Felicity Tejada, second place (P3,000); and Kurt Lugtu, third place (P2,000).
Lastly, Gimbern Villegas won the Manila Bulletin’s Choice Awardee. He brought home P10,000.
Tags: artwork, exhibition category, Filipino identity, John Raymond Guevarra, Las Piñas City, Las Piñas City artist bags top prize in 7th Manila Bulletin Sketch Fest, Mall of Asia, Manila Bulletin, Teodelorenz Racuya, Unity in diversity
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