Zonta Club of Makati and Environs hosts first all-women art competition

The Zonta Club of Makati and Environs, Philippines, partnered with the BDO and SM Supermalls to host the first all-women art competition, "Sining Filipina." The winning painters received their awards on 15 March, and the paintings are on exhibit, along with other finalists' works.

The awards program has announced 78 finalists from across the country and revealed the top three winners for each category. A total of 732 entries were received by the club, out of which 48 and 29 finalists were selected from the figurative and non-figurative categories, respectively. The top three winners for each category were awarded the following prizes: P 250,000 for first place, P150,000 for second place and P100,000 for third place.

The names of the winners in the figurative category are:

  • Hanna Joy Sayam received first place for her acrylic piece, Pira-Pirasong Tela Ng Mga Marias.
  • Luckyshia Jenilou Canonigo claimed second place for her oil painting, Gabay Na Ilaw.
  • Christina Baltero was awarded third place for her oil painting, Kula.

The names of the winners in the non-figurative category are:

  • Maria Gemma San Jose received first place for her acrylic painting, "Layers of Experiences."
  • Maria Melissa Sangoyo received second place for her acrylic painting, "She's Not That Complicated."
  • Isabelita Rodillo claimed third place for her acrylic painting, "The Power of Many."
Many ambassadors to the Philippines graced the event and exhibit opening, including MaryKay Loss Carlson from the USA, Constance See from Singapore, Laure Beaufils from the UK and a delegate from the Royal Danish Embassy. Other notable figures included Eva Melbin and Charity Ekeada-Davidon from the Nigerian embassy, Elizabeth Sy, the president and chair of SM Hotels and Conventions Corp., Albert Yeo and Gederico Tantoco from BDO Unibank and Rosemarie Rafael, president of Airspeed.

The esteemed judges of this first all-women art competition were:

  • Kenneth Esguerra is a senior curator and head of conservation at the Ayala Museum.
  • Tina Colayco is president of the Metropolitan Museum of Manila and a professor and former dean of the University of the Philippines (UP) College of Fine Arts.
  • Julie Lluch is a multi-awarded sculptor and master of clay and terracotta who has represented the country in various international exhibitions.
  • Painter Mark Justiniani is known for his socio-politically illustrative-fueled works. He has gained recognition for producing installations using mirrors, glass, and stainless steel and continues to influence contemporary Filipino art heavily.
  • Victoria T. Herrera is the director and chief curator at Ateneo Art Gallery. She is the former director of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) Visual Arts and Museum Division and a curatorial consultant for UP-Baguio's Museo Kordilyera.

The auspicious occasion celebrated art, women's empowerment and the boundless creativity inherent in Filipina artists. The club's groundbreaking competition aimed to provide a platform for recognizing and appreciating the extraordinary talent prevalent among Filipina artists nationwide.

Christine Jacob-Sandejas hosted the program, and the talented Zontian Charming Baldemor made the unique and beautiful trophies given to the winners. More than 250 artists, art collectors, Zontians, guests and BDO Private Bank clients attended the event.

Vice Club President Joanne Zapanta-Andrada said, "The time has come for women to be represented and spotlighted in the fine arts field. Art, to me, is a sensory reflection or expression of the human condition. For years, it has been dominated by the worldview of men. Now it is said that as women hold half of the sky, I think it is just right that on earth, women should be given a chance to give their worldview in a more meaningful way."