Milan — As the Filipino nation celebrates National Heritage Month in May, overseas Filipino in Northern Italy got a triple treat through a series of exhibits in Corbetta, Milan and Venice featuring the works of Filipino artists.
“It is a wonderful coincidence that these exhibit are taking place in the month of May when we celebrate National Heritage Month. It is a triple cultural treat for the Filipino community in Northern Italy,” Consul General to Milan Irene Susan Natividad remarked.
Kicking off the celebration was Richard Gabriel’s exhibit La Mie Due Patrie (My Two Homelands) on May 4, 2019 in the City of Corbetta.
Mr. Gabriel, who hails from Pampanga and moved to Italy to study art, was conferred the Bagong Bayani Award (Arts) for Outstanding Filipinos Overseas in 2007. His exhibit features sculptures of carabao horns to represent the land of his birth and shoe sculptures to depict the fashion capital, Italy, his second home.
This was followed by the opening of an impressive collection of art works organized by Pinto International at the Musica Arte Cultura (MAC) in Milan on May 6, 2019. Entitled “Living Earth: Contemporary Philippine Art,” the exhibit features the works of Leon Pacunayen, Mark Justiniani and 25 other contemporary Filipino artists.
A pioneer of modernism, Mr. Pacunayen has earned numerous awards and recognition for his work. He has exhibited in the Philippines and in Italy where he spent a great part of his career. Now in his 80’s, he continues to paint in his home in Puglia.
Members of the Filipino community then trooped to Venice on May 8, 2019 for the opening of the Philippine pavilion at the 58th Art Biennale.
The Philippine Pavilion was curated by Prof. Tessa Maria Guazon with Mr. Justiniani as participating artist. Mr. Justiniani plays with mirrors to create illusions and perceptions across three huge platforms depicting snippets our story as a nation and people.