New breed of student-artists feted

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“LODI” by Loreber M. Comision, first place winner in the sculpture category.

A new breed of young and talented Filipino artists has emerged as Pilipinas Shell awarded the 12 young winners of the 51st National Student Art Competition (NSAC) last 12 November at the Ayala Museum.

For more than half a century, the NSAC has produced renowned artists including National Artists Jose Joya, Federico Alcuaz, Ang Kiukok and Ben Cabrera. As a testament to the continued thriving of art in the Philippines, close to 1,000 entries from all over the country were submitted to the competition. Of these, three winners were chosen for each of four categories.

This year’s theme for the competition was “Perspective,” which challenged the student artists to showcase their vision of their future and the future of the country in oil and acrylic, watercolor, sculpture, and digital fine arts.

Third place winners, second place winners and first place winners received P30,000, P40,000 and P60,000 respectively. In addition to this, the first place winners were given a P20,000 grant in support of faculty development and a plaque of citation in excellence in curriculum program in studies in fine arts.

The winners’ works were displayed together with the top 100 submissions at the Ayala Museum from 13 to 18 November. The competition winners’ entries were also on display at the Shell House Lobby in Valero, Makati City until 23 November.

Celebrating the last 50 years of this social investment project, the Shell NSAC continues to visualize a future filled with art and life as part of its thrust towards a bright future for energy, innovation, and artistic living.

“Shell is not only about road safety, efficient fuel sources, and environmental awareness. One of our long-standing goals is to continually foster Filipino art by discovering young artists,” said Shell Companies in the Philippines country chairman Cesar Romero. “NSAC has always been the venue for recognizing potential and giving these artists a chance to make their own mark in the industry.”

During the awards rites, Pilipinas Shell also launched the coffee-table book The Golden Voyage, which celebrates the artworks of students over the last 50 years of the NSAC. The book is written by renowned art critic and artist Cid Reyes.

“Retrospective” by Michael D. Ramos, first place winner in the watercolor category.

Renowned judges select 12 winners

Much like in previous years, Pilipinas Shell gathered the country’s top artists from different specializations to serve as judges for this season’s competition.

Painters and master artists Lito Carating and Raul Lebajo, art critic and scholar Cid Reyes, multimedia artist Jose Tence Ruiz, and former Dean of UP Fine Arts Nestor Olarte Vinluan handpicked the top three winners for the oil and acrylic category.

Master painters Antipas Delotavo, Pablo Baen Santos and Edgar Doctor were in charge of the watercolor category. Master sculptors Michael Cacnio, Ral Arrogante and Reggie Yuson served as the judges for the sculpture category.

Renowned visual artists Pablo Biglang-awa Jr., Ross Capili, Dopy Doplon, Lex Kabigting and Norberto “Peewee” Roldan picked the winners for the Digital Fine Arts category.

In the oil and acrylic category, first place winner is Almario D. Tangalin (Navotas Polytechnic College) for his work “Up Side Down,” while second-place winner is Gyles Maverick O. Abac (University of the Philippines Diliman) for his work “The Grid of Progress” and third placer is John Michael E. Pujante (University of the Philippines Cebu) for his work “Tomorrow’s Fool.”

In the watercolor category, first place winner is Michael Jay D. Ramos (Eulogio “Amang” Rodriguez Institute of Science and Technology or EARIST) for his work “Retrospective,” while second placer is Joshua D. Villena (iACADEMY) for his work “Magkakaiba Pero Magkakapareha” and third placer is Bernice Michaella M. Cruz (University of Santo Tomas) for her work “Hopscotch Life.”

In the sculpture category, first place winner is Lorebert M. Comision (Adventist University of the Philippines) for his work “LODI” while second placer is Harlem C. Sunga (Tarlac State University) for his work “Building One Nation” and third placer is Joegan G. Espina (EARIST) for his work “Infinity.”

In the digital fine arts category, first place winner is Patricia M. Mangahas (Far Eastern University) for her work “I.C.U.,” while second place winner is Charles Bryan R. Alba (Technological University of the Philippines) for his work “Coming” and third placer is Azriel T. Domingo (University of Rizal System-Angono) for his work “The Barkada Never Goes Away.”

The legacy of Filipino artists

As one of the longest-running art competitions in the country, the NSAC continues to seek out and recognize Filipino artists and their crafts. For the past half century, Pilipinas Shell has aimed to provide a venue where these artists can shine and follow in the footsteps of the many artists who have found their footing in the NSAC.

Whether it is in finding the budding talents of the country or enriching awareness of the arts, Pilipinas Shell continues to lead the way in putting Filipino art on the map.

Its commitment to excellence goes beyond its industry as the leader of energy, as Pilipinas Shell envisions a world that is artistic and inspiring as it is innovative and driven towards excellence.

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