Trailblazing Architect Francisco “Bobby” Mañosa who pioneered the use of indigenous materials in his designs that have become landmarks throughout the country remains hopeful that his body of works will gain the recognition it deserves.
“We are honored that our father has been nominated for the National Artist citation. Despite the Supreme Court decision, we still hope that our father will be recognized for his lifetime contribution to the arts,” said Mañosa’s son Dino, who felt neither rancor nor loss with the Supreme Court ruling.
“At first, we were saddened by the high court’s decision but we were also relieved that the issue is now over,” said Dino, the second of three children of the 83-year-old architect.
Dino also added: “I think more than anyone else my father helped reconnect Filipino architecture to its roots. He pioneered the use of sustainable materials and fashioned structures using native materials relevant to modern architecture. And I feel hopeful that in the future, if he is ever nominated again, this will be duly considered.”
On Tuesday, the Court nullified former President and now Pampanga Second District Rep. Gloria Arroyo’s grant of the National Artist Award in 2009 on komiks novelist and film director Carlo Caparas, fashion designer Jose “Pitoy” Moreno, theater artist Cecille Guidote-Alvarez and Architect Mañosa.
Mañosa who has been nominated for the award at least four times made a name for himself in the field of Philippine architecture by reinterpreting the concept of the bahay kubo and emphasizing the extensive use of indigenous materials in all his works.
He is best known for his masterpieces all over the country, such as the Coconut Palace in Pasay City, the luxurious Amanpulo Resort at Pamalican Island in in Palawan, the Ateneo Professional School in Rockwell, the San Miguel Corporation building in Mandaluyong (which was designed after the world-famous Banaue Rice Terraces) and the iconic Shrine of Mary Queen of Peace, more popularly known as the ”EDSA Shrine” among others.
Legacy comes first
Dino Mañosa, added that despite the ruling, what remains important for their family right now is to make sure that the contributions their patriarch made over the years will continue to be relevant.
“In the face of this ruling we don’t want Filipinos dismissing our father’s contribution to Filipino Architecture. National Artist or not, his legacy remains very important to us and we want to make sure that his legacy will remain intact and his contribution will be heralded in due time.”
“We think the reason why his name keeps coming back to be duly accorded the National Artist laurels is because our father really championed the idea of imbuing Filipino identity in architecture. We hope that one day in his lifetime, he will be officially recognized for his noble contributions,” Dino said.