• NEMIRANDA AND HIS RIZAL

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    Popularly known as Nemiranda, painter and sculptor Nemesio R. Miranda, Jr. is a child of the lakeshore town of Angono, Rizal, which is known as the Art Capital of the Philippines.  His works reflect the mystic charm of his hometown – its folklore and rustic lakeside scenes, as well as its people’s love for their family and the environment.

    Drawing the human form through pure imagination, Nemiranda has evolved as the country’s forerunner of IMAGINATIVE FIGURISM and a master of the human form.  He has had over fifty exhibitions in various parts of the world, and has been commissioned to do sculptural monuments like the People Power Mural at the EDSA Shrine in Ortigas, the World Earth Day Mural in the Philippine Senate, and the 20 Mysteries of the Holy Rosary from the EDSA Shrine to the Antipolo Cathedral, which have become landmarks in key cities in the Philippines.

    Apart from being a prolific painter and sculptor, Nemiranda is considered a leader in Angono’s thriving cultural community. The first in Angono to popularize sculpture in concrete, his Nermiranda Art House and Museum serves as an exhibition hall for the artists in Angono and the rest of Rizal.

    Together with other artists – trail blazed the development, promotion, and growth of regional art by founding the Angono Ateliers Association, the Rizal Arts Federation, the Angono Foundation for Tourism and the Arts, and the Angono Tourism Council.

    Nemiranda’s passion for the arts and his involvement in civic groups like Boy Scouts of the Philippines and the Rotary Club, have made him a catalyst in the development of his hometown as the Art Capital of the Philippines.  Here, he takes us around his Rizal, his SM.

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    Nemiranda beside his petroglyphic table at the Nemiranda Art House

    “ I made painting and sculptures of mythical creatures like mermaids and Malakas at Maganda because legends can be forgotten with the passage of time.  But if you immortalize these with art works, they will not be forgotten by future generation.”

    Nemiranda is photographed beside the petroglyphic table in his Art House. It is inspired by the Petroglyphs in the Angono-Binangonan boundary, a World Heritage site with about 127 drawings of animal and human figures engraved in rock.  The Petroglyphs are said to date as far back as 3000 BC.

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    Nemiranda beside the Ang Nuno, a sculpture on the grounds of his Art House inspired by the hermits of folk legend and lore.

    Known as the House of Legends, the Nemiranda Art House and Museum was designed and constructed by the artist himself, using indigenous materials such as bamboo, sawali, and old recycled wood coming from Angono’s old convent and church.  The Arthouse is surrounded by mythical murals of the Mariang Makiling, Mutya ng Pasig, and Bernardo Carpio; and is a showcase of the works of the artist and his five children.  Attached to the Arthouse is the family residence, which has become a tourist attraction because of its turn of the century wooden designs, and its collection of Nemiranda’s works from the sixties and seventies.

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    Apart from painting and sculpture, it is my passion to transform Angono into an Artist’s Village. I have been training artists since the 1970s.”

    The Art Camp at the Nemiranda Art House and Museum complex is a center for art workshops and events; while the Atelier Café in true artistic fashion uses old sewing machines for tables and has photographs and artistic notes from artists past and present. It will serve Angono cuisine like sinigang na kanduli and organic tea. Both the Art Camp and the Atelier Café are envisioned to be gathering places for artists.

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    “If I would take guests around my hometown, I would take them on a tour that would celebrate the arts.  We are home to two national artists – Carlos Botong Francisco for the Visual Arts and Lucio San Pedro for Music.  Rizal also has numerous galleries and a vibrant art scene.”

    Nemiranda along Dona Aurora Street beside Botong’s Bayanihan, a  bas-relief sculpture by C.V. Francisco. Dona Aurora Street is known as the Street Gallery because of its numerous artworks with Nemi spearheading the display of public art in his hometown since the 1970s.

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    “No visit to my hometown would be complete without stopping by the Carlos “Botong “ Francisco Gallery.”

    Nemiranda inside the workshop of National Artist Carlos “Botong” Francisco with Carlos Totong Francisco II, the artist’s grandson and and owner of The Second Gallery.

    Known as the Poet of Angono, Carlos ‘Botong” Francisco single handedly revived the forgotten art of murals and remained its most distinguished practitioner for three decades.  His unerring eye for composition, his lush tropical colors, and his abiding faith in the folk values typified by the townspeople of Angono became the hallmark of his art.

    His workshop is a tourist destination with his worktable and memorabilia.

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    “Art lovers must not miss the Blanco Museum which showcases the works of Jose “Pitok” V. Blanco and his family.”

    Nemi is shown photographed in front of Carabao Festival, Feast of San Isidro Labrador, which Jose Pitok V. Blanco painted when he was 45 years old.  Pitok, the son of a fisherman, was a prodigy of National Artist Botong Francisco, and all his seven children are well known painters.

    The Blanco Museum displays the incredible life-like paintings of the most famous family of painters in the country, including the Angono Fisherman’s Festival, which shows the annual fluvial parade with hometown folk, including Blanco himself in the crowd.

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    “SM has not only brought progress to Taytay and the rest of Rizal province, but has also been our partner in promoting our regional arts.”

    SM City Taytay has not only brought great shopping, leisure, and entertainment to the east Metro area, but has actively supported the arts by providing a venue for cultural events, including the Rizal Arts Festival.

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     The artist at the SM Department Store’s Men’s Section, where he regularly shops for his clothes.

    “I like shopping for my clothes at SM’s Menswear Department.”

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    Nemiranda with close associates and god-daughter at SM City Taytay.

    “My friends and I like getting together at SM.”