Thursday, May 24, 2007


We visited the shop of the noted sculptor Luis Ac-ac. Unfortunately, he wasn't in the shop when we dropped by, but we did have the chance to see his works in a mini-gallery at the back of the shop.

The National Commission on Culture and the Arts (NCCA) describes him and his contemporaries as "Working within a genre dubbed folk modern and primarily in traditional sculptural materials" and "represent a stable romantic thread among sculptors carrying a torch for work portraying characters from local myth, excerpts of small-town tableau, and idealized images of Filipino heroes."

His shop, along with many other Paete landmarks, form part of Paete's "museum".

A carver begins work on panels ordered by a US-based client. Below are samples of Ac-ac's work:
This is one of a series of works on the older brother-younger brother theme. The magkapatids (siblings) are usually portrayed engaged in Filipino children sports.

Si Malakas at si Maganda. What's missing here is the bird that split the bamboo open to reveal, as the story says, the first Filipinos. Despite this, there seems to be a European quality to the way the couple were portrayed by the artist vis-a-vis the work done on the same subject by National Artist Carlos Villaluz Francisco a.k.a Botong.

I was thinking that this particular work by Ac-Ac might be interesting when cast in stone or bronze. It could be a nice gift to European governments when the Philippines celebrates something historic in Europe, say, 50 years of diplomatic relations. It would look awesome in a plaza or a lobby.

Incidentally, the Botong work - which he did for the 1953 International Fair in Manila under the presidency of Elpidio Quirino - was executed in wood by carvers from - where else? - Paete. The painting version is still, I think, with the Marcoses. It used to be displayed in their San Juan home. This information came from an article by Jaime Laya on the subject of the former First Lady's collections, but I digress.
Children at play.
Warming the bench. If you're not looking hard enough, you might trip on this sleeping boy and his dog.


rhodyl said...

gusto ko yung si maganda at si malakas... mag kaya benta nya???

Citizen of the World said...

Rhodyl, I didn't get to ask pero thanks for visiting!

Do drop by again.

Anonymous said...

hello, I am looking for sculptors for a project I am working on and I would like to know if you still have Luis Ac-Ac's address and or contact number? if you do can I please get it? thank you ;) my name is Karen and you can email it to me at :) thank you so much

Anonymous said...

hello. we are doing a study on the folklore "Si Malakas at si Maganda". I'm wondering if you could give me the contact details of Luis Ac-ac. Really, it will be a great help. Thanks.

Jhanifah Lucman said...

Hello po! I'm AIKO. I went in Paete, Laguna last September 26 for our field trip. Ganda talaga dun kasi ang linis. Tapos, ang daming carvers. Sayang, hindi namin napuntahan ung artworks ni Luis Ac-ac. I hope makabalik kami dun.

(Jhanifah Lucman)

Anonymous said...

Hello po! I'm AIKO. I went in Paete, Laguna last Sept. 26. Kasi we nag-field trip kami dun. Ang saya kasi daming magagaling na carvers. Sayang, hindi ko nakita ung artworks ni Luis Ac-ac. I hope makabalik ako dun para makita ko ung iba't ibang artworks. :)

(Jhanifah Lucman)