Again, the tomatoes and the knife are for emphasis...
This was posted as my response to GIBBS CADIZ's latest post on the Necrological Service for the National Artists Awards last Friday, the 7th of August...
First of All, i prithee, PEACE... such silence is deserved of this mournful day.
I would have wanted to say this in my own blog, however for the time being, i reckon this would be the appropriate place to share it.
I am fortunate enough in my lifetime to have learned from two National Artists: first, as a student of Salvador "Badong" Bernal when I was still in theatre school, and under the supervision of the late Leonor Orosa Goquingco -one of the first National Artist Grantees.
I admit, I am one of those people who put National Artists on a pedestal, primarily because even at their age, Badong Bernal can still turn BIC Ballpoint pen crystal casings into chandeliers and bed canopies in one quick set change; and in her late years, Leonor Orosa-Goquingco showed us one last time why she is the original Filipina Creative 'Dancing Queen'
That is why I am passionate about this, because I know what it took to be granted the honor of the Order of the National Artists of this nation. I think we owe it to them and those others that came before, to not take this sitting down.
A beloved friend of mine and former mentor said something so fitting: "Dios mio! Mahal ko ang aking sining at alam ko kung kailan ako magpapaka-gutom rito at kung kailan ko kailangan ibenta ang aking sarili. Marahil ang pinaka-pangit na sa ating mga obra pa man ang iyong piliin ay hindi pa rin ito maihahambing o mapapantayan ng isang likha ni Carlo J Caparas. Isa itong kalapastanganan sa nasabing parangal."
I will get some flak for being an elitist -well, i have gotten some from the "tinga" and dregs of the wannabes and pretenders out there who have been found wanting after their futile attempts at being controversial at my expense- but thou canst begrudge me if that is where I and most of my colleagues are coming from. We do few things but we do them well, that is the initial definition of artistic integrity in my book.
How can they thus, for shame, look over the likes of a Mars Ravelo, a Larry Alcala, a Dolphy for that matter, or even one of the deserved in that list for the likes of one whose contribution to art and popular art is really fit only to wrap 'tinapa' from the local palenque?
How can you have a National Artist for Film and Visual Arts if he never drew those things in the first place? Where is the visual artist in that? and let us not get started on film being another category from cinema... Sin verguenza!!!
And Carlo J. Caparas actually displays no humility about it at all with his reactions... this only goes to show that being "deserved" is far from what I can describe him at present. I can hurl expletives his way, but i reckon he won't comprehend them. Thus amended, I quote Rolando Tinio's translation of one from Shakespeare he might just get: "WALANG MODONG SALANGGAPA!"
thus spake the Barefoot Baklesa
"Let us take charge of the world before it's gone as we know it."
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