03 June, 2009

the barefoot baklesa meets Gilda Cordero-Fernando

Today was one of those days that started out as something that would not seem to go the way I would want it to. First, i woke up a little later than I had intended, was still a little feverish, ran out of oatmeal, and had no milk for my wheatbix either...

There were still a few errands to run, and I had to meet my friend Owee for a project we were doing together. Unfortunately, the snail's pace traffic flow of the South Luzon Expressway was not of any help either.

Well, as it turns out, Owee was supposed to meet one of Filipino Literature's most influential figures: Gilda Cordero-Fernando. A well-known publisher and author responsible for books like: Turn of the Century, The Body Book, The Soul Book, Cuaresma, and others that currently escape my memory. In short, Gilda Cordero-Fernando's books have influenced my identity as a Filipino design artist.

Truth be told, we were just there to negotiate for her involvement in a photography book. What started out as an afternoon with buco pandan and coffee transitioned into dinner and dessert! Negotiating took less than half an hour at my count, and the three hours beyond that, indescribable.

Conversation, Ideas, Theories, Sentiments on Filipino Culture and Identity, and Laughter all seem in place, in her home, which is in itself a testament to Philippine Art. Not even her heirloom ivory crucifix encased within a glass dome could distract me.

It felt as if this woman whom I held in high esteem, since the first time I have read her books, was like a kindred soul found in this sea of absurdities and farces that artists like me experience in the humdrum of the daily grind; lost in a murky sea lacking any inspiration with certain dreams put on hold.

I do hope I'm making sense here... I'm just clearly, in plain terms, starstruck!

She's such a cool Lola!

By the evening's end, she had one of her attendants take out copies of The Body Book and signed it herself, presenting them as gifts to two young artists who felt so energized with those three -call it- magical hours.

When we got into the car, I went, "Whaaaaaaahhhhhhhh!!!!"
Trust me, I seem to have run out of words at that time. Here we are, five hours later, thinking this blog does not feel sufficient to describe the experience.

thus spake the Barefoot Baklesa


Alexis said...


You met Gilda Cordero-Fernando????!!!

the barefoot baklesa said...

yeah, kapatid... and i'm still decompressing from the sheer joy it has given me.

she's really something else.