Some 20 regulars of a restaurant made popular by Erwan Heussaff in other parts of the country will be the subject of an exhibit by an artist from Pasig who practically devotes half of his time in Baguio. Aurelio Castro III, who became famous for his sketches of medical health workers who died during the early stages of the Covid 19 pandemic in 2020, has made sketches of regulars at the Luisa’s Café. Castro, who held an urban sketching exhibit here last year with local artist Ged Alangui will, unveil his 20 portraits that include national artist for film Kidlat Tahimik this week at the second floor of the restaurant which is partly an art gallery ran by the Ibagtit artists.

The works which he calls “Friends From Luisas” include mediamen, artists and even waitresses of the popular watering hole which is also a favorite café for retired Baguio old timers as well as contractors. His pen and wash sketches include two-time Palanca awardee for poetry Frank Cimatu, a local editor, former SunStar Baguio editor Roderick Osis, Alangui and sculptor Kigao Rosimo, who just concluded his Re-emerging of Deities exhibit also at Luisa’s, among others.

He said that the portraits were done while doing the urban sketches in September last year and during breaks have a beer or two. From there, he sketched those who he had interaction, friends he shared table with and those who give him his beers like Brenda Bungasngas, Merlyn Villoria and the more recent addition to the Luisa’s second floor crew Evangelyn Balderas. “It was just a break from my sketch tour (urban sketching) stint here last year, when it rains I stop and go to Luisa’s, eat and have a beer or two then I talked to one of the local artists, Jason Dinamling.

So there,” said the former lead guitarist of Juan Pablo Dream. Then it was this writer, who helped him stage the urban sketch exhibit, a ballot/chicharron vendor, then Merlyn the waitress. “I was supposed to give it as a gift to my subject, but then I drew more,” said Castro, who was in Baguio for several arts encounters – exhibits and workshops. The one “manth” (man-month) exhibit will run until middle December, unless Cimatu and Rosimo, Ibagtit’s founders, decide to extend it, which is often the case.

Pigeon Lobien/ABN

Amianan Balita Ngayon