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HK-Pinoy artists exhibiting in New York praised for ‘giving back’

20 July 2019

Consulate officials led by Consul General Claro S. Cristobal  and UN Mission Charge d’affaires Kira Danganan-Azucena, exhibit organizers and artists cut the ribbon.

By Daisy CL Mandap

A group of Filipino artists from Hong Kong and the Philippines has won praise for holding an art exhibit in New York aimed at raising funds for charity.

In his speech at the opening of the ‘Lakbay Sining sa Amerika’ exhibit at the Philippine Center in Manhattan on Jul 1, Consul General Claro S. Cristobal praised the artists for “having the heart for sharing” their talent with the less fortunate.

“Art speaks also to the sublime, to the ideal, and that to me is what the collection here represents. There is an ideal of giving back, of sharing,” he said.

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Cristobal, who also once served as Philippine consul general in Hong Kong, noted that the majority of Filipinos in the former British colony are not as privileged as those in New York, so they need other people to inspire them to be the best that they could be.

“People here in New York become masters of their lives, unlike in Hong Kong, where the great majority of Filipinos have masters and they cannot live out much of what they wish for themselves,” he said. “So we need people that give them that inspiration, that animating spirit, and that’s when I turn to these great people of this community to give back, to share.”

Attendees admire the works.

He added, “So I am so happy to welcome you here because here is a great collection of art.”

During his time in Hong Kong, Cristobal was a known supporter of Bethune House Migrant Women’s Refuge, the beneficiary of the New York exhibit.

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Gail Camaya-Hills, whose Galleria Camaya mounted the show, thanked Cristobal and his staff for allowing her group to book the Philippine Center, a most sought-after venue for Filipino artists who dream of exhibiting abroad.

“Thank you to the consulate in New York for allowing us to show what we can offer, and make the Philippines proud,” she said. There’s never been a better time to invest in an outstanding Filipino art piece. They are unique, well made, real works of art, and are reasonably priced.”

Gail Camaya-Hills

Hills said there are many talented Filipino artists waiting to be discovered. “However not many of them can afford to travel and sell their work abroad, so it is my job as a gallery owner to break the barriers and bring them to the international scene so they can get the worldwide exposure that they deserve.”

Hills started exhibiting Filipino art at the bi-annual Asian Contemporary Art show in Hong Kong in 2016. She has done this yearly since then, and last year, she mounted her first overseas show at the Philippine Embassy in Vienna.

Galleria Camaya’s New York exhibit showcases the outstanding works of 21 promising Filipino artists, many of them award-winning and highly sought after by collectors.

Hills, who is herself a well-known ceramic painter in Hong Kong, is among the featured artists.

She is joined by Bono Albania (former HK- based but has relocated to NYC), Ejem Alarcon, Jepoy Almario, Jaime Raphael Atienza, Gerrico Blanco, Ronald Buxani, Grace Pineda Camacho,Astrid Hernandez Castillo, Richard de la Cruz, Ronald “Bullet” Dematera, Alvin Florentino, Mary Rose Gisbert, Jaime Gubaton, Dondon Jeresano, Norlie Meimban, Keith Paras , Jojo Ramirez, Stella Tansengco Schapero, Rowel Vicencio and Janeth Marticio- Weil.
Albania, Gisbert and Schapero also attended the opening night.

The exhibit runs until Jul 12 at the Philippine Center on 5th Avenue, New York.

For inquiries, email Gailhk@ or call telephone number +1(240) 690-1999.
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