PH national artist marker unveiled

January 11, 2019 | By: ARCH. MARY KRISTINE A. SEGOVIA (first published in The Manila Times last January 9, 2019)

The celebration of the National Architecture Week (NAW) became more significant this year as Filipino architects around the world showcased various momentous activities in line with the weeklong fete.

On Dec. 10, 2018, another milestone marked the celebration through the unveiling of the Philippine National Artist Marker for the house of Arch. Francisco “Bobby “Mañosa at Ayala Alabang, Muntinlupa City.

Mañosa was conferred the highest and noblest recognition given in the country, the Order of the National Artists of the Philippines for Architecture and Allied Arts last Oct. 24, 2018.

He became the sixth architect who was bestowed such award.

The unveiling of the marker was led by no other than the new National Artist himself, Mañosa, and his wife, Denise Mañosa, together with their children and grandchildren.

The occasion was graced by the United Architects of the Philippines (UAP) National President Arch. Benjamin Panganiban Jr, Philippine Institute of the Philippines (PIA) former president Arch. Cynthia Naval, UAP College of Fellow Chancellor Arch. Richard M. Garcia, PIA COF Chancellor Arch. Alvin Vega and PIA Gold Merit Awardee Arch. Jose Pedro Recio.

It was organized by the UAP Sentro ng Arkitekturang Filipino, PIA, and UAP Del Pilar-Bulacan Chapter and was sponsored by Pacific Paints (Boysen) Philippines Inc.

A token of appreciation and recognition was also given to Mañosa and his family — a framed book cover of the limited edition book featuring the works of the Philippine National Artists for Architecture which was co-authored by Arch. Joel Rico, FPIA, and Arch. Robert Benedict C. Hermoso, FUAP. The book is set to be launched in February 2019.

The two-story Mañosa residence is not just a home to the national aArtist’s family, but is one of the best examples of modern Filipino Architecture. It is also known as the “Bahay-Kubo” mansion which was completed in 1983. It embodied the significant character and features of contemporary tropical Filipino architecture.

The structure also represents the distinct architectural design style and design philosophy of Mañosa, who practically and creatively used and considered local building materials, tropical climate, Filipino values and traditions as key elements to his designs. Each and every part of the Mañosa house has its own significant story to tell.

The “bahay kubo” and “bahay na bato” features and details were essentially incorporated and were visible such as the high ceiling, pitched roof, wide windows and door openings, extended and exposed huge wooden support or “tukod,” low eaves and overhangs and wide receiving open spaces.

With his creative ideas, Filipino ingenuity and craftsmanship were also given an opportunity to be developed and showcased. Some construction indigenous materials that were abundantly used in his house were bamboo wooden floor slats, coconut husks wall paper, coconut shell and mother-of-pearl tile overlays and more.

His family’s lifestyle and tradition and built environment were also considered in the design reinterpreted in a completely modern way. The Mañosa House evokes a cultural and artistic imprint of Filipino architectural history and its ethnicity.

The Mañosa house is not just a modern “bahay kubo” but an epitome of what is a true Filipino architecture could be. An architectural legacy for each and every Filipino architects should be proud of.

These undertakings started in 2004 and are spearheaded by the UAP, PIA and the Cultural Center of the Philippines. To date, about 15 national artists for architecture and allied arts markers have been installed on some notable works of Juan F. Nakpil, Pablo S. Antonio, Leandro V. Locsin, Ildefonso P. Santos and Jose Maria V. Zaragoza.

Three more markers are proposed to be installed on selected structures designed by Mañosa by second quarter of next year.

Some of Mañosa’s other masterworks are the “Tahanang Pilipino” also known as the Coconut Palace, Shrine of Mary Queen of Peace, Our Lady of EDSA; the Mactan Shangri-la Resort & Spa at Mactan Island, Cebu; Mary Immaculate Parish Church; the Pearl Farm Beach Resort in Samal Island, Davao; the Amanpulo Hotel and Resorts at Pamalican Island, Palawan; the Escaya Resort and Spa in Bohol; the Provincial Capitol Building of Lanao del Norte; the Medical City Hospital in Pasig City; and many more.

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