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Philippine Artists Group (Canada) Celebrates 28th Year

By Rose Tijam
Photos: Ariel Ramos
February 1, 2017


A prelude to its grand 30th anniversary in 2018 …..  

December 17, 2016, Scarborough: Like the proverbial ducks elegantly  gliding on the water, officers and members of the Philippine Artists Group (PAG)  merrily go on showing guests their art exhibits, silent auction pieces, raffle prizes,  and living edition prints . There are Christmas songs on the air, rendered by singer Terence Vince, the young Diamante Twins, and the very talented  daughter of PPCO president Gene Lopos, etc.  

The dance floor is alive with action.   The night is full of artistry – there are paintings galore in the lobby, and inside the hall --- your eyes feast on them and your hearts swell with pride. Money raised will help finance the planned 2018  bash, which will feature a coffee table book that will show case selected art works of past and present members, and other activities.  PAG’s 30th bash in 2018 is swiftly coming, today being just  a few days away from year’s end.

          According to  PAG president Gene Lopos“ An Evening with the Artists” held last December 17, 2016 at the Rembrandt Banquet Hall in Scarborough manifests the bayanihan spirit very much alive in the Filipino Canadian community. To the nearly 300 attendees, the event celebrates the artistry  of Filipino artists who  rendered landscapes, still lifes and portraiture in acrylic, oil and other mediums.

          The Philippine Artists Group, then composed of a small number of ardent visual artists, officially formed in June 12, 1988 , in time with the 90th  anniversary of the declaration of Philippine Independence. The original founding group is composed of the late Rol Lampitoc,Sr.;  Romi MananQuil, Isabel Grosvenor, Ed Aranquil, Art Cunanan and Tony Doctor.  Since then, the membership grew, and their art shows became a traditional  feature in the annual Philippine Independence Day celebration , showcasing and promoting Philippine arts and culture in Canada.

Over time, PAG provides a “ home” to our artists, offering a welcoming and encouraging artists’ environment. Too, the gifted artists continue to collect awards,  citations and honors as they participate in stiff competition in the mainstream arts circles. Several  PAG members regularly visit the home land and participate in art shows there, taking time to paint local landscapes and portraiture, renew connections with compatriots, and breathe in local ambiance and artistry.

          At the recent pre-Christmas celebration, Consul General Rose Prospero delivered a greeting to the association, and expressed her sincere appreciation of  PAG’s  artistry and efforts in heritage and cultural promotion. Senator Tobias Enverga, Jr.,  himself a budding  visual artist and an Honorary Member of PAG, expressed his pride in the achievements and growth of the artists’ organization.

               Noted in the crowd  was the attendance of various community leaders that included numerous past presidents of the University of the Philippines Alumni Association, and their spouses, and  current president Alice Herrera and husband Romy;  other alumni and professionals , business executives , and media practitioners, among them another UPian Manolo Arnaldo , president of Philippine National Bank Remittance; Retired General Guy Camacho;  Dr. Christy Gamo; publishers  and media members Carlos Unas, Joey Baking, Marissa Corpus, Noel Perada, Bin Kon Loo, etc. Noted, too, was the presence of past presidents of the Philippine Artists Group – Nelia Tonido, Frank Cruzet, Omel Masalunga,  Romy MananQuil, and  Mogi Mogado.  Theresa Lumanlan ,  another UPian and budding artist, received accolades in the over-all coordination of this successful event. 

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