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2018 Metrobank Art & Design Excellence discovers newest winning artists

Metrobank Foundation, Inc. continues to uphold its legacy of honoring Filipino creativity through the recognition of new promising artists for the 2018 Metrobank Art & Design Excellence (MADE).

Two (2) Grand Awardees for the Painting Recognition Program and one (1) Grand Awardee for the Sculpture Recognition Program will be receiving a financial assistance worth P500,000 and the “Mula” glass trophy designed by 2009 Metrobank Prize for Achievement in Sculpture (MPAS) awardee Noell El Farol.

Meanwhile, two (2) other finalists for the Oil/Acrylic on Canvas Category, Painting Recognition Program were given Special Citations for their remarkable artworks.

The awardees with be formally recognized at the 2018 MADE Awarding Ceremony and Exhibit Opening as part of the 56th anniversary celebration of the Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company (Metrobank) on September 20, 2018.

The awardees also become members of the MADE-Network of Winners (MADE-NOW), the alumni organization of past MADE awardees implementing pay-it-forward projects that benefit marginalized sectors.

For more than three decades, MADE has since served as a platform to discover emerging names in the art scene. This year, the theme “Discover” invites painters and sculptors to immerse into a whole new experience—one that demands looking at the world with fresh eyes to discover the beauty in things mundane and overlooked.

MADE Painting Recognition Program


Title: “Kanya-kanyang Tinik, Kanya-kanyang Landas, Iisa ang Ginagalawan”

Artist: Noel M. Elicana

Iloilo-based Noel Elicana is the Grand Awardee for the Oil/Acrylic on Canvas Category with his piece “Kanya-kanyang Tinik, Kanya-kanyang Landas, Iisa ang Ginagalawan.” Elicana, through representational surrealism, portrayed both creation and destruction in this award-winning piece.

A tree rooted in the artist’s deep familiarity of his hometown in Oton, Iloilo, serves as the center of the composition where otherworldly figures and flowers spring. While death and destruction are represented through bones and vultures.

“Every single Filipino has their own yoke to carry. But no matter what their differences are, their eyes shine with positive thoughts. These people envision their dreams and are searching to unlock their journey,” said Elicana.


Title: “Destroyed”

Artist: Alex P. Ordoyo

Grand Awardee Alex Ordoyo portrayed the devastation that enveloped Marawi City through his monochromatic piece entitled “Destroyed.”

The painting stitches the various features of the capital city of Lanao del Sur through the presentation of the destroyed urban landscape — ruined houses, establishments, mosques and fleeing figures.

In the spirit of representational cubism, the work frustrates perspective or any point of entry to sensibly navigate the piece, so much so that the viewer is confronted by the full intensity of a wreckage.

Ordoyo reminds us that war is not something in the distant past, consigned to history, but a continuous looming threat hovering even in this second decade of the new millennium. As Marawi begins its slow but sure-footed rehabilitation, “Destroyed” is a dire warning that, without our radical search for justice, something as destructive threatens to happen again.


Title: “The Sacrifice”

Artist: Francis Eugene E. Andrade

Bulaceño artist Francis Eugene Andrade’s “The Sacrifice” grabbed a Special Citation for its remarkable message tackling a mother’s undying love for her children.

The piece is a domestic portrait evoked through the symbolism of clothings. A mother’s silken dress, crumpled and dejected, is draped on the cover of a sewing machine while three clothes paired with hats depicting the children’s occupations are displayed on the wall.

Delicately mended, each dress exhibits wear and tear as well as an entire history of smears and stains. While the “The Sacrifice” alludes to the mother, this also extends to the children as they grapple with life’s struggles.

Rendered in sepia with its subtle effects of chiaroscuro and with the dresses being old-fashioned, the work offers a simple but no less moving testament to parental love that doesn’t count the cost.


Title: “The Diminishing Memories of Home”

Artist: Roland F. Llarena

Completing the trio of artists from Iloilo, Roland Llarena’s “The Diminishing Memories of Home” touches upon notions of departure.

Evoking the desaturated coloration of a faded photograph, the work features an ancestral house that already shows signs of ruin and degradation.

Juxtaposed to this ancestral house is a trolley bag, painted realistically, ready to be wheeled away and his decision to paint the luggage with the colors of the flag symbolizes not only of the experience of overseas Filipino workers but also our diasporic culture as a whole.

For Llarena, “home is where the heart is”—a transportable, moveable thing. What will replace the old is something that may be not tangible but is more persistent and long-lasting.

MADE Sculpture Recognition Program


Title: “Interconnected”

Artist: Maria Ronna Lara-Bes

Maria Ronna Lara-Bes won this year’s Grand Award for the Sculpture Recognition Program with “Interconnected,” a medley of spheres and lines symbolizing binding ties.

With three equidistant spheres representing Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao as a base, the indoor sculpture is interconnected by “stems” inspired by different indigenous fabrics and stainless spheres of varying sizes that serve as vital connecting nodes of the composition.

While the sculpture is contemporary—even futuristic—in its sensibility, through the patterns, it gestures at our schools of living tradition.

“Interconnected” is a visual representation of how the disparate islands of our archipelago are bridged together by its people. Whether the connection may be that of “familiar bonds, regional ties, or social media.”

Lara-Bes’ sculpture embodies the deep and abiding bonds that shape our identity and shared experience. Elegant in its beauty and clarity, Interconnected manifests the perpetual hope for solidarity.

For this year’s MADE Sculpture Recognition Program, sculptors were challenged to design an artistic and modern indoor public art installation at the Atrium Lobby of Met Live, a three-level upscale mall in the Metro Park complex located at Macapagal Boulevard, cor. EDSA Extension in Pasay City.

Serving as the signature art centerpiece of the mall, the artwork should personify the visual design identity of Met Live which is described as “threads of fabric, fashion, and architecture all woven together creating an artisanal and innovative characteristic that is ethnic-inspired yet versatile, artful yet progressive.”

This year’s MADE Painting Recognition Program Final Board of Judges was chaired by one of the country’s leading art critic and 13-time MADE judge Cid Reyes. Members of the Board included 1993 Metrobank Annual Painting Competition winner Alfredo Esquillo, Jr., award-winning visual artist Marina Cruz and curator Ricky Francisco and esteemed member of the academe and art community, Professor Leo Abaya.

Meanwhile, the MADE Sculpture Recognition Program Final Board of Judges was headed by multimedia artist and 1990 Metrobank Annual Painting Competition winner Mark Justiniani. Members of the Board included award-winning international sculptor Daniel dela Cruz, multimedia artist Gerardo Tan, Interdisciplinary artist Josephine Turalba, and sculptor Reginald Yuson.

Now on its 34th year, MADE has set the benchmark among the country’s art competitions, raising the general public’s appreciation for the arts through exhibits and lectures and has long served as the career launch pad of the country’s most admired contemporary artists and sculptors. Among its past awardees are Elmer Borlongan, Mark Justiniani, Jan Leeroy New, Salvador “Buddy” Ching, and Andres Barrioquinto.

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