A unique art hub opened its doors last December 15 as Sentro Artista launched its maiden exhibit entitled Forever Young featuring Tanya Gaisano Lee and RJ Burlat from Mindanao.
They are joined by sought-after Metro Manila artists Mylene Quito, Kwin Chi, Bell Sison, and Bryan Apolinario. The event was also marked with the release of its first OPM single entitled Paskong Kasama Ka produced by Marjorie Ruiz, Director of Sentro Artista. This original Filipino song was composed by hitmaker and Awit awardee Marizen Yaneza Soriano, arranged and accompanied by classical guitarist Aaron Aguila and sung by Sophie Alcaraz.
Sentro Artista founders Quezon City first district Congressman Arjo Atayde, Quezon City first district Councilor Dra. Geleen Lumbad, and husband Joseph Lumbad, veteran journalist Jay Ruiz and wife Marj Ruiz collectively created a distinctive home for talented Filipino artists around the country to showcase their masterpieces.
“Definitely this is one of the things I have been doing since the pandemic. It’s not actually a hobby but it’s kind of an addiction for me because it brings a lot of people together. I appreciate art so much and I grew into it as I grew older. It keeps me happy all day, all night. It’s my stress reliever,” Atayde said.
Atayde, 32, known as the young matinee idol and a good actor, admitted that he met a lot of art and painting collectors like businessman Joseph Lumbad, season veteran journalist Jay Ruiz and some other friends who share the same passion for collecting arts and help the artists to promote their works.
Mayor Belmonte, one the distinguished guests in the Sentro Artista launch praised the Sentro Artista for promoting promising and established local artists, painters, sculptors, photographers, singers and musicians, actors and actresses, poets, and craftsmen among others.
“Well I’m very happy that there’s a new art gallery here in Quezon City because personally, I am an advocate for culture and the arts, and I feel happy that this gallery focuses on up-and-coming talented young artists,” Belmonte said. “That’s the advocacy I am happy and willing to support.”
Other notable personalities in the launching were husband and wife Art and Sylvia Sanchez-Atayde, incoming University of the Philippines President Atty. Jijil Jimenez, Asian Champion figure skater Sofia Frank, her mother former beauty Queen Preciosa Tongko, Honorary Consul of Sri Lanka William Chen, businessman Rico Gonzalez and Architect Jay Ruiz, among others.
“We established this as a home for Filipino visual artists, poets, writers, musicians, and artisans,” said Marjorie Ruiz. “Furthermore, we want to propagate Filipino culture and represent artists from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. We are coming up with more exhibits, workshops, musical performances, and book publications to bring Filipinos together.”
Located at the upper ground of the Arton Strip, Sentro Artista has a wide base for artists and art lovers who can demonstrate and highlight their respective works with a cup of the world’s recognized SGD or Sagada Coffee to help them reach the global stage.
Rich Watanabe, the founder of the Philippines’ very own SGD coffee, joined Sentro Artista in promoting and buying the work of local artists.
SGD or Sagada Coffee has been awarded and recognized by the AVPA (Agence pour la Valoristion des Produits Agricoles) twice as the world’s best coffee in 2017 in Paris, France (Gourmet Award) and in 2019 in Milan, Italy (Bronze Award).
Forever Young runs until December 28 to be followed by its year-ender exhibit on December 29 entitled Continuum featuring masters and established visual artists.