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Monday, July 17, 2023

Ortigas Art Festival 2023: The power to connect and unite people

Art is for all, and it has the power to connect and unite people. This is what Ortigas Malls wanted to showcase for the 6th Ortigas Art Festival at Estancia East Wing, Pasig City from July 12 to August 13, 2023.


With the overarching theme “Art for All: An Exhibition of Borderless Passion & Craft,” the Ortigas Art Festival is a free event where visitors can see and experience art in varying forms and participate in educational workshops. It aims to highlight the talents of artists who  want to showcase their creations to a wider audience, as well as ignite the passion and appreciation for the arts without being confined to  a limited space.

Ortigas Art Festival 2023 is officially open. (L-R) Helen Mirasol, Consultant for Ortigas Art Festival; Tirso Cruz III, Chairman of the Film Development Council of the Philippines; Hon. Roman Romulo, Pasig City Congressman; Arch. Renee Bacani, Vice President of Ortigas Malls;  Hon. Angelou de Leon-Rivera, Councilor and Chairperson, Committee on Cultural and Spiritual Affairs of Pasig City; Atty. Ignacio Ortigas; Renato Habulan, Lead Curator for the Ortigas Art Festival; Mark Umaña, Head of Special Projects, National Commission for Culture and the Arts; Alex Ortigas; and Rita Bustamante, Floral Artists of Davao Association President


“One of Ortigas Malls’ goals is to put Filipino art and craftsmanship into the forefront, and bring them closer to Filipinos through our annual art exhibit in Estancia. This year’s Ortigas Art Festival is unique as we invited talented artists from Rizal, Pangasinan, Bulacan, and Davao to share their talents, knowledge, and masterpieces in this month-long event,” said architect Renee Bacani, Vice President of Ortigas Malls.


“I’m really thankful to Ortigas Malls for providing an opportunity like this for six years. This is an important platform to really reach out to a wider market,” said Renato “Mang Ato” Habulan, Head Curator for Agos Studio and Linangan Residency. He added that the Ortigas Art Festival is a great way to educate people about various forms of art, and empower people to build a community through artistic expression.


A wide range of art appreciation

One of the highlights of this year’s Ortigas Art Festival are the artworks from Mr. Habulan’s Art Caravan, a traveling exhibit that brought art to various communities. The project encouraged collaboration between artists, fostering a creative space for them to paint and sculpt  outside the confines of their rooms. These pieces are displayed at the Agos Studio and Linangan Art Residency exhibits.


Seasoned and up-and-coming Filipino artists from Davao, headed by Ms. Rita Bustamante, also shared pieces at the month-long exhibit. 


For Photography, vintage photos from 1900-1920 of Southern Philippines and Cordillera are showcased by Ortigas Foundation. While fine print photographs are exhibited by Red Lab Gallery.


The Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) will host free Night Film Screenings of critically acclaimed Filipino movies directed by Regina Cadena (Sonata), Paolo Villaluna (Pauwi Na), and Zig Dulay (Paglipay).


Aspiring filmmakers can also join the third Ortigas Vertical Cinema Contest, with the theme “Pursuit of Happiness,” for a chance to win exciting prizes.


For Dance & Music, Step by Step Performing Arts Studio,Bughaw Folkloric, and Sindaw Philippines Performing Arts Guild are scheduled to have performances during the Ortigas Art Festival.


For Fashion, there will be a Miss Universe National Costume Exhibit by Empire PH and a Couture and Bridal Dress Exhibit by Kaayo Modern Mindanao.

Sharing the knowledge and love for the arts


In the spirit of making arts and craft more accessible, Ortigas Art Festival is hosting a series of talks and workshops.


Visitors can sign up and have an immersive experience in pottery with OdangPutikand create intricate macrame pieceswith Luntian Kagubatan in partnership with Agos Studio. There will also be back-to-back workshops by the Philippine Bonsai Society and Ikenobo Ikebana Society of Manila. 


Mr. John Silva, Executive Director of the Ortigas Foundation, will give a talk on the Cordillera exhibit, while Dr. Laya Boquiren Gonzales, professor at the University of Asia and the Pacific, will give a talk entitled “Writing About Art and Artists”. Another professor from UA&P will have a poetry reading of Dante Alighieri’s “Inferno”.


“Over the past six years, we have worked with so many people – those who came to learn and those who came to teach,” said Helen Mirasol, Ortigas Art Festival Consultant. “One thing that became an integral part of each festival were the Comment Boards, which encouraged viewers to take a more critical view of the artworks,” adds Mirasol.


Through the Ortigas Art Festival, Estancia Mall continues its advocacy of bringing art closer to more Filipinos as well as giving them respite from the challenges of everyday life. The festival also gives Filipinos a chance to learn more about art and tap into their artistic side.


“We have to teach art to a wider audience because it can enlighten people. I hope we can connect not only to young artists, but also to ordinary people who have the potential to do more art,” said Mr. Habulan.


Art indeed has the power to connect us all. Together, let us enjoy Ortigas Art Festival 2023.


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