Kapentura artists from Malolos hold group exhibit at Philippine Center
Helen Dimaya-Amladi, Fidelis Balagtas-Belda, Nemencio Macapugay, Arnaldo Mirasol, Danny Pangan, Josefino Rodriguez, and April Gamboa-Villacorta, all members of the Kapentura Art Group, unveiled on August 1 their collection of paintings at the Philippine Center on Fifth Avenue.
The group coined that name (Kape + Pintura) because the members usually hold their weekly meetings in a coffee shop inside a mall in Malolos, Bulacan.
The NYC exhibit will showcase themes, such as Spanish-era houses, ethnic musicians, flora and fauna, and scenery painted en plein air. Kapentura artists held their first group exhibit at the Bonifacio Global City. They hold regular on-the-spot painting sessions on a farm in Malolos City.
Let’s meet the artists.
Helen Dimaya-Amladi took up Fine Arts, major in Advertising at the University of the East. She also studied at the Philippine School of Interior Design (PSID) and opened an interior design firm that specializes in furniture. In the U.S., she did restoration work on old buildings and interior-designed private homes. Helen’s passion for outdoor painting bore fruit last year when she won in the En Plein Air Easton Quick Draw, a competition sponsored by the Chesapeake Art Gallery in Maryland and the Avalon Foundation.
Fidelis Balagtas-Belda earned her Bachelor of Music degree major in Piano and minor in Voice from the Centro Escolar University’s Conservatory of Music. She took further studies in Violin and Voice Concentration in the University of the Philippines-Diliman. Although she had an inkling of her artistic talent even when still young, Des only recently decided to devote much of her time to painting. She turned out to be very prolific, capable of turning out in a day several watercolors of her favorite subjects, which are flowers, pets, and rustic scenery. Des also teaches music in a private school in Malolos and is a private piano tutor.
Nemencio Macapugay is another Kapentura member who mixes music with painting. He studied at the UP Conservatory of Music, where he majored in violin and guitar. Prior to enrolling at the UP Conservatory, Nemencio entertained the idea of enrolling in Fine Arts, because he knew early on that he also has an aptitude for the visual arts. But music won, perhaps partly because of the influence of his father who was a musician. Although, he chose music as his profession, Macapugay found an outlet for drawing when he worked as comics illustrator. His favorite medium is watercolor, which he masterfully uses in his paintings of Filipino tribal women and men playing ethnic musical instruments. Macapugay has exhibited his outstanding collection in Canada.
Arnaldo Mirasol studied at the University of Santo Tomas and the University of the East. He majored in painting in both schools. His first job was as editorial cartoonist for different Manila newspapers like the People’s Journal, Ang Bagong Masa, and We Forum. He worked as textbook illustrator for various educational book publishers, and later did fairy tale illustrations for Tahanan Books. He showed the illustrations he did for the books on the fairy tales of Hans Christian Andersen and the Brothers Grimm in two successful solo-exhibitions at the Crucible Gallery at SM Megamall. Arnaldo paints full-time, and is trying to gather works for another solo show.
Danny Pangan is a regular at group art exhibits both in the Philippines and abroad. He has also done solo shows, and is a recipient of many awards, including the prestigious Gawad Bayani at Bituin para sa Sining Biswal (Hero and Star Award for the Visual Arts) bestowed on him by the City of Malolos. A Fine Arts graduate from the University of the East, Danny made a name for himself by painting various renditions of vintage houses and colonial churches as seen through three-dimensional windows.
Josefino Simbulan Rodriguez studied at the University of Santo Tomas College of Architecture and Fine Arts. He majored in painting. Josefino used to attend the weekly sketching sessions of the Saturday Group during its very early years, alongside the august company of senior painters who are now National Artists. He put his sketching skills to good use when he worked as artist illustrator at the Ethnology Division of the National Museum from 1983. He worked as art coordinator at the Vietnamese refugee camp in Morong, Bataan, conducting workshops for English teachers and Vietnamese volunteers. Josefino is now into painting full time and exhibited extensively in the U.S. most of them in New York.
April Gamboa-Villacorta is an alumna of the University of Santo Tomas, where she majored in Painting. Right after school in 1981, she became an artist illustrator of the National Museum of the Philippines. April was encouraged to hold her first solo show when she won art competitions three times in a row, in 1983. April likes Ibarra dela Rosa’s artworks, and was greatly influenced by Van Gogh’s style. She has done five solo shows, four in the Philippines and one in Los Angeles. She is based in California, and is very active in the art scene there. She had joined several group art exhibits, and had lately participated in a collaborative mural painting project with fellow Filipino artists..
The exhibit runs until August 12. For inquiries, please call Victor Cruz, at 212-575-4774.