Legislator bats for use of City Hall as Art Museum

May 21, 2017

There can be no better declaration of support from the City Government of Baguio for local artists and their art than by allowing them to exhibit their works in the lobby of City Hall when possible, and along the empty walls of its public halls as a viewing gallery for the public and interested buyers of art.

This is one of the main reasons behind the proposed legislative measure authored by City Councilor Lilia Fariñas seeking to allow the utilization of the Baguio City Hall as an art gallery, to include its lobby, available walls and other possible area as a gallery for visual art, and creating a committee to serve as museum or gallery curator.

In the explanatory note of the proposed ordinance councilor Fariñas said that Baguio City is a known haven for artists in all the aspects of performing and visual arts. Also the city of Baguio is home to world renowned and national artists such as Benjamin “Bencab” Cabrera and Eric De Guia or as he is more popularly called ‘Kidlat Tahimik’. She further pointed out that “there are countless more budding artists of different ages from children to professionals that are of national or international calibre who needs to be recognized, in order for them to showcase their talent and if possible sell their works to art enthusiasts or collectors.

Fariñas in her proposed ordinance likewise cited Sections 14, 15 and 16 of Article XIV of the 1987 Constitution which declares that “the State shall foster the preservation, enrichment and dynamic evolution of a Filipino culture based on the principle of unity in diversity in a climate of free artistic and intellectual expression”; “Arts and letters shall enjoy the patronage of the State. The State shall conserve, promote and popularize the nations historical and cultural heritage and resources, as well as artistic creations”, and; “All the country’s artistic and historic wealth constitutes the cultural treasure of the nation and shall be under the protection of the State which may regulate its disposition”.

By utilizing the available walls and spaces at City Hall as an art museum and gallery councilor Fariñas hopes to create a beautiful and decorative government facility strategically decked with art works from local artists which will not only provide the latter with an opportunity to showcase and sell their works in a public and well visited venue but also assist the city government in its endeavour to help local artists promote their talent as well as augment their means of livelihood.

In the event of its approval the said proposed measure will declare that the City Hall of Baguio shall function as a Museum of Visual Art, aside from its usual governmental functions, by allowing the utilization of its lobby as a venue for exhibits, to include available walls along its halls, and other feasible areas, to hang their paintings and other similar works of art for sale, for plain appreciation, or as may be purposely indicated by the exhibitor.

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