Civic-minded artist’s community Walls Gallery, opened its doors to artists and art aficionados all over the metro with the grand opening of its alluring new home at Triumph Square, 1618 Quezon Avenue, Quezon City last Saturday, September 8, 2018.
Beginning the day with a blessing by former Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene rector and parish priest, Msgr. Jose Clemente Ignacio, Walls Gallery formally unveiled its impressive two-floor collection of charming murals and portraits over a cordial evening of cocktails and conversation.
For Walls Gallery’s patron and art visionary Ms.Gigi Lim, her shared passion of collecting proudly Filipino art, along with son Ian, goes beyond a mere hobby or investment, but a zealous advocacy to raise awareness on Filipino art and culture.
“We try to support the young and emerging Filipino artists. This here becomes their home. We’ve made it their home. The purpose of this place is not just to show art, but make sure that it becomes a hub of artists. Whether they are part of Walls or somewhere else, this is the perfect venue to share ideas and merge things together,” Lim explains, “With every gallery out there just being commercial; this is what we lack now. No gallery has ever brought together artists from all walks of life, all kinds of genres, to share and collaborate under one roof.”
Instrumental to gathering Walls Gallery’s roster of bright, budding artists is the powerful connecting reach of social media. “Nag post lang ako online, at si Ms.Gigi doon pala tumitingin ng mga artworks. Buti na lang may nagkagusto sa gawa ko, kaya sila nakadiskubre sa akin,” tells abstract painter Gene Tonic, “Iba talaga nagagawa ng social media para sa mga artist ngayon, mas naeexpose mga gawa mo. Sobrang halaga ito para sa amin.”
“Sa umpisa talaga, magririsk ka eh. Tatandaan mo yung mga bagay nay yun at iaaply mo. ‘Wag ka lang ma-stuck. Sa kaka-experiment mo, sa kakagawa mo, nadedevelop mo yung standard mo sa image. Nag-umpisa lang ako drawing on paper. Nag-risk ako from paper to canvas. Di ko akalain mapapasali ako dito,” beamed Gene as he stood beside his latest piece “Half Euphoria”.
For San Pablo, Laguna native Rodney James De Guzman, the long journey that took him from working in Baguio City, to pursuing his studies and finally taking the courage to pursue his lifelong passion full-time, has made his arrival to Walls Gallery truly worthwhile.
“Sa dami ng mga artist sa Pilipinas, iilan lang ang nabibigyan ng ganitong klaseng oportunidad. Napakaswerte namin talaga na makasama dito sa Walls at mabigyan ng exposure ang trabaho namin at mas makilala. Never ko to na-imagine. Napakalaking pasasalamat namin,” acknowledged the watercolor specialist who fondly describes his still of life by Lake Pandin as “dito kami naglalaro nung bata kami…payapa, tahimik..parang bumabalik ka sa mas simpleng panahon.”
Recounting his winding road to fulfillment as an artist, Rodney James shared his advice to those who wish to follow the same path. “Wag kayong hihinto. Wag kayong matakot. Ipagpatuloy niyo lang at i-develop pa ang sarili niyo. Kung mayroon mag-critique man ng gawa mo, tanggapin mo lang yun bilang positive. Ang art di naluluma, laging mayroong bagay na matututunan pa…Dapat mahalin nyo yung medium na napili mo at siguradong lalabas yun sa trabaho mo.”
A hallmark of Walls Gallery’s vibrant and eclectic assortment of artworks is its different genres that also celebrate truly Filipino traditions and customs. “Walls artists are identified by their own authentic and original style,” says charcoal and acrylic painter Salvador Cabrera, whose highlighted subject is the mother and her child.
“I draw inspiration from Filipino ethnic culture. The women in the Cordilleras and mountain province, they wrap their babies in blankets and swaddle them while they work,” says Cabrera, “There is the perfect expression of love between mother and child. That’s the greatest thing.”
Such a heartwarming insight indeed, on the evening of the Feast of the Nativity of Mother Mary.
As Jesuit Communication Foundation’s (JesCom) “Patron of the Arts” December concert draws closer, Ms.Lim expressed her excitement over Walls Gallery’s cooperation with the media and communications arm of the Philippine Province of the Society of Jesus’ annual Christmas spectacle.
“I was so fortunate that Monsignor Clem (Ignacio) introduced me to (JesCom Executive Director) Fr.Nono (Alfonso) and JesCom. As an Atenean, of course I will go for a Jesuit organization. I believe JesCom gives us a great help in supporting the cause and talent of the Filipino artist,” says the Economics alumna of the Ateneo de Manila.
Beginning on September 22, Walls Gallery will conduct exhibits every month until December. The scheduled exhibits will feature four selected Walls Gallery artists at a time, and showcase their works for fellow artists, potential buyers and art enthusiasts as well.
Walls Gallery is open from Mondays to Saturday, 11am to 7pm. Appointments may be scheduled on Sundays.
For inquiries on JesCom’s upcoming “Patron of the Arts 2018” concert please get in touch with Ms. Dit Sablan at tel. 426-5971 or 72, local 121, mobile number 0908-886-8447, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.