Sunday, January 11, 2009

THE SONS ALSO RISE (July 07, 2008)

Having been educated as a nurse, like his mom Delia and wife Maribel who’s with him and their daughters in Ireland, Marvin surprised us when, all of a sudden, he emailed us with no spam and the like at all this time but rather a forwarded message about him as a contender in the Irish Arts Compendium! When we found out that he had been slowly but surely fulfilling his dream – via his painting Next in Line ! -- included in the number one Art Voting Competition in Ireland – we hoped and prayed for his home-away-from-home quest or conquest as an Associate Member of the Arts Society of Ulster! He then updated us about his ongoing exhibition for three months, being one of the only five artists, mostly Irish, who got the nod to exhibit during summer at the Central Bank of Ireland. Not to mention that his Dreaming VII is still a part of the Showdown at from June 30 till today, July 7, like his other works featured on the online gallery called Irish Arts Review. An Art Association of the Philippines Juror’s Choice Awardee in Painting Category, Marvin has been selected in the Open Art Exhibition at the The Glebe Gallery as well as in the Iontas’ 17th National Small Works Art Competition and Exhibition in Sligo. Last year, he once again had his solo exhibition at the Ace of Arts in Letterkenny, Co.Donegal.
On the other hand, his younger bro, Monnar, just held his fourth solo exhibit here in Pasig City at the Ortigas Foundation Library last month. Dubbed Independent Evolution, it featured and offered for sale more than a dozen of his works in acrylic as well as in pen and ink on canvas and paper. Presently the design director for the weekly magazine Women's Journal, Monnar also has earned five Jurors' Choice Awards in the prestigious annual art tilt of the AAP. He was also chosen as finalist in the Phillip Morris Group of Companies Philippine Art Awards. He has worked in the publishing field for almost two decades and maintained cartoon strips for various publications such as Sun Star Manila, Diyaryo Filipino, Manila Times, and Malaya. Monnar is a member of the AAP, Samahan ng mga Kartonista sa Pilipinas (SKP), and the Pinsel Artist Group of UE Caloocan. He has participated in more than a dozen group exhibitions.
Wow, these guys whom we saw grow up as Calumpangin (long before Tayabas became a city) are now both carving their names for themselves, consciously or otherwise, a far cry from their Paeteño father -- the incomparable and indefatigable painter, sculptor, printmaker, book illustrator and writer Manuel Baldemor!
It is indeed a good thing, physically for Marvin, since he has been the first and only fabulous Baldemor boy in Francis Bacon’s Ireland, and, metaphysically for Monnar, since he has been succeeding in his style that could have been mistaken easily for a Dali than for his daddy!

At the National Museum in Ermita, Manila, by the way, some of the masterpieces of the National Artists for the Visual Arts of UP are in a feast for the eye named after its book Forming Lineage edited by Prof. Ruben D. F. Defeo and Dr. Patrick D. Flores (who together with Ms. Corazon S. Alvina, did a great job in giving us answers, especially to the youngsters, as why we must be very proud of our past). While there, we visited, among others, the The Japan Foundation and the Embassy of Japan's exhibit entitled Counter Photography: Japan's Artists Today / Swarm in the Aperture: Recent Photography in the Philippines at its Tambunting Hall before catching the fourth edition of Virgin Labfest that opened at the Bulwagang Huseng Batute and Bulwagang Amado V. Hernandez of the Cultural Center of the Philippines last June 25.
The day after was opening of Atty. Saul Hofileña’s Collection of Muling Ptyk: Da Art of Nonoy Marcelo at the Edge Gallery of the Jorge B. Vargas Museum in U.P. Diliman where Juan can see Australia-based artist Alwin Reamillo’s UP Centennial Artist Residency Project called Nicanor Abelardo Grand Piano Project as if welcoming the its new curator in Prof. Boots Herrera who succeeded Dr. Ana Labrador and Dr. Helen Yu-Rivera!
Saturday was the cruelest day for us since we could not bilocate merely to attend National Artist BenCab’s painting installation at Silverlens Gallery in Makati coinciding with the launch of his book BenCab: Nude Drawings edited by poet Krip Yuson and published by Anvil Publishing Inc. and, at the same time, perform at BalikTanaw, a solo exhibit of singer/composer Heber Bartolome at Maestro Masterpiece Art Depo in Quezon City.
At least, Juan has ample time to see the opening of Aba Lluch Dalena’s show Liquid Love at the Mag:Net High Street at the Bonifacio Global City on July 8 at 6 p.m., an hour after the launch of White Sand on Paper and Sand in Shorts featuring the Ateneo de Manila University faculty writers who participated in their writing retreats in Boracay such as Jose Bernard Capino, Mark Anthony Cayanan, Elmo Gonzaga, J.P. Jacobo, John Labella, Marco A.V. Lopez, Bj A. Patino, Allan Popa, Danton Remoto, D.M. Reyes, Didith T. Rodrigo, Agustin Martin Rodriguez, Edgar Calabia Samar, Katrina Stuart Santiago, Benilda S. Santos, Lawrence Lacambra Ypil and Alvin B. Yapan whose short film Rolyo will be compete in this year’ Festival Paris Cinema with Jim Libiran’s Tribu, that won the top prize in 2007 Cinemalaya independent film competition . Those who failed to watch the premiere of Barako last year can still watch it in its first commercial run in Robinsons Galleria’s IndieSine (Cinema 8) from July 9-15. First-time director Manolito C. Sulit and Emman Pascual co-directed the movie featuring Arnold Reyes, Archie Adamos, Carlon Matobato, Leo Martinez, and Dennis Marasigan. Theater legends Behn Cervantes and Nanding Josef, poets Raul Funilas and Mike Coroza, National Artist for Literature Bienvenido Lumbera, and yours truly also played special roles in the movie supported by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts.
Keep our communication lines open, feel free to email us at
TEACHER: What is the similarity of Jose Rizal, Andres Bonifacio,
Apolinario Mabini and Ninoy Aquino?
STUDENT: Ma'am, correct me if I’m wrong, but what I know is that they’re
all born on a holiday!

Measuring life by what others do to you may disappoint you.
But measuring life by what you do to others will add meaning to your life.

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