NCCA art in public spaces brings back Baybayin through tattoo

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The National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) through its Arts In Public Spaces (APS) program, in partnership with the National Parks Development Committee, spearheaded a two-day baybayin writing and henna tattoo workshop for the public on June 11 and 12.

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 Egai Talusan Fernandez leads the NCCA Baybayin workshops at the Kanlungan ng Sining

Egai Talusan Fernandez leads the NCCA Baybayin workshops at the Kanlungan ng Sining

Egai Talusan Fernandez, member of NCCA Committee on Visual Arts, facilitated the Baybayin writing workshop at Luneta’s Kanlungan ng Sining. Freelance tattoo artists, led by Joseph Angelo Alcuriza, joined him in the workshop that attracted almost 200 youth from different schools, as well as office workers who came to enjoy the Independence Day weekend at Luneta.

Participants recognized the need to revive the baybayin even just for academic purposes.

According to the attendees, the workshop was a way among the many efforts to bring back peoples’ interest in the old Filipino script. Joem Calderon, one of the attendees of the workshop and an academic himself believed that baybayin should be taught in schools.
Some also expressed their intent to bring the workshop to other venues.

The Arts in Public Spaces’ baybayin workshop is part of NCCA’s efforts to bring art closer to the people. Spearheaded in 2014, NCCA’s Arts in Public Spaces program started as a project directed to popularizing Filipino arts and culture through mural painting in public spaces.

Partnering with the Metropolitan Manila development Authority and visual arts organizations, the first Arts in Public Spaces murals debuted under the Mabini Bridge in Manila.

In 2015, in partnership with Philippine Air Force and the Local Government of Pasay, Arts in Public Spaces was implemented in Villamor Airbase and the Pasay City cemetery. Aside from the mural painting, the APS program involved capability building through enjoining the community around the sites during the making of the project.

For 2016, APS seeks to bring not just mural paintings and workshops to the public.
Although mural painting is still one of the main highlights of the program, APS now involves delivering a variety of art forms as well as cultural elements like literature, traditional games and traditional crafts. APS, aside from hosting workshops, also offers outreach performances, demonstrations, and public visual arts exhibitions.

 One particpant proudly shows her name in baybayin

One particpant proudly shows her name in baybayin

Among the fields explored by the NCCA’s APS programs so far had been chalk art and story-telling. Tracks for traditional games and traditional art like pabalat making will be hosted in the upcoming activities.

For more information on the Arts in Public Spaces activities you may call the NCCA National Arts Month secretariat through number 527-2192 local 302 and look for Ron Fernandez. Also check out NCCA’s website through ncca.gov.ph and visit the NCCA Facebook page for updates.

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