Quadruple Bypass

“Fairy tales can come true… they can happen to you…”

And happen to you they did.

Erudite Manila simmered, seethed, and gritted their teeth as the four new “National Artists” were announced by the CCP Cultural Center of the Philippines…

“Fairy tales can come true… they can happen to you…”


  1. Presy Guevara said,

    November 30, 2009 at 7:29 am

    I just saw a watercolor by National Artist J. Elizalde Navarro entitled Portrait with a Mechanical Baby dated 1978. The title and the artist signature were written continuously on the left side of the picture. The person who showed it to me knew Jerry very well, rather close enough to tell me Jerry gave him the art piece as it was rejected by Imelda Marcos for international exhibition.

    The model in the 22″ x 30″ painting is a beautiful woman, clad in simple chemise with wide shoulder straps. Her face is shown at three-quarters angle, looking up at an invisible object, held above her eye level, between her right forefinger and thumb. She is in sitting position atop 3 layers of round pillows with her left hand slightly above her spread legs exposing her artfully shaded frontal asset while right below is the free-falling doll with its mechanical gears also exposed through a rectangular port. The picture challenges the viewer to fathom the story behind the pose and the mechanical doll. I was also told that Jerry left his first wife for this model and that this particular piece was part of a series of nudes. With such a story, I wonder how much it would command in the art market. Doesn’t the Lopez Museum own some of Jerry’s works?

  2. gshaw said,

    September 4, 2009 at 11:35 am

    pagbigyan nalang si Moreno, bigla syang tumanda when he was on T.V. giving his comment, act of charity, marami namang nakinabang na trying hard Pinay sa kanya…
    at nakalimutan na ang pagka “plagiarist” niya sa business nila.
    when he was just starting he did nothing pala but steal ideas from senior ones in that small circle of modistas, that’s what the now aged matronas remember..

  3. tambo said,

    September 2, 2009 at 5:55 am

    the previous recipients should all just return the award in protest.
    that’s giving a strong statement..
    but sad, the likes of Caparas, Guidote and Moreno will not be bothered.

  4. Cousin Paz said,

    August 28, 2009 at 1:51 am

    I watched the interview of Caparas by Che-Che Lazaro on Probe last Wednesday! Whew!!!! Ano yun? Sure, I empathize with the guy for what he went through in life but the National Artist thing is a different story. He is getting its objectives wrong. I think he considers the National Artist award as a way for him to alleviate the plight of the poor. Huh? He was talking about compassion for them and his good intentions to make their lives better. Huh???? Then he insinuates that he is running for public office next year. What the…..!

    I think the poor people of this country have been “overused” for many things that’s why they remain poor. And you have a National Artist wanna-be like Caparas using their plight just so he could gain their sympathy. Even worse, we have people like Morato ranting like hell with convoluted logic defending Caparas and the president who bestowed the honor. Magsama-sama na kayo…Haaay naku!

  5. Dr.Taddy Buyson Gonzales said,

    August 23, 2009 at 8:53 am

    There is an article in the Sunday Lifestyle of the Inquirer today Sunday, August 23, 2009. ” WHAT, REALLY IS ‘DELICADEZA’? “. By Conchita Razon.
    It is worth reading.
    Perhaps it can be reprinted here too.

  6. Garganta Inflamada said,

    August 20, 2009 at 10:32 pm

    So, do they teach Taglish classes in journalism schools now? How about Bisayglish? Kapampanganglish? Ilongish? Kinda makes people who studied proper English and Pilipino feel wasted. Thanks, Manoling.

    Another question…and maybe a whole new thread for Toto: should ‘ethics’ classes instead be taught at the schools of the elite and other higher learning institutions since the leaders of the land will mostly come from there? Or will it be an absolute waste?

  7. talagang tsismoso said,

    August 20, 2009 at 5:07 am

    Shame on them
    By: Manuel L. Morato

    It is unfortunate that the past National Artist awardees who raised hell did not live up to the honors given them by this administration and the ones before.

    The detractors of this year’s awardees should have not resorted to their destructive mission of criticizing the four awardees for 2009, for that’s truly improper and uncalled for.

    The past awardees who criticized and maligned this year’s four awardees only cheapened and destroyed themselves. Instead of helping preserve the prestige of the award, they instead succeeded in shooting themselves on the foot for what they did. For their uncouth and improper behavior, they, too, put themselves to public scrutiny.

    If those who spoke out too soon against the four awardees this year had some decency, together they could have very well protected the prestige of the award. But they chose to destroy those who came after them and labeled four of them “undeserving.” But who are they to act us jurors which they are not entitled to?

    Some past National Artist awardees such as Virgilio Almario, Bienvenida Lumbera, and their cohorts are now the ones being judged by the public at large. They brought to fore that they, too, are not deserving. While they rant, the public are now asking who the hell they are. Many are questioning if they are truly deserving of the award given them in the past. I am one of them.

    The four who were attacked, insulted, and maligned are Bobby Manosa for architecture, Pitoy Moreno for fashion, Carlo J. Caparas for visual arts, and Cecile Guidote Alvarez for theater.

    The focus of the controversy is now not limited to the four awardees but on all the awardees. And the more they compare, the more the four awardees this year stand out as more deserving and not the other way around.

    Those who received posthumous awards must now be turning in their graves, for their names have also been dragged into the controversy. Carlos Quirino, who was chosen by former President Ramos and Erap’s choice, Ernani Cuenco, to name a few, are now being maligned by these “potentates” as also not deserving. Where will this end?

    Those who instigated this controversy must pay for their sins for not accepting the prerogative of the President of the Republic.

    The self-proclaimed “potentates” of the Cultural Center of the Philippines or CCP (which some people say are aligned with the other CCP) think too much of themselves. They think that they have the final say when their role is only recommendatory.

    It is only right that the final decision rests on the President of the Republic, for if not, the CCP could stack the list of awardees with only their choice. The bottomline is that the members of the CCP selection committee are anti-Gloria.

    To cite an example, the CCP’s choice of awarding movie director Celso Ad. Castillo who constantly violated the existing laws of the land. The worst and the most indecent film I’ve reviewed as MTRCB chairman was Celso’s Snake Sisters, banned by the late President Marcos, resubmitted for review during the term of President Aquino, which I also banned and was sustained by Malacañang Appeals Committee for being outright pornographic.

    Celso Ad. Castillo is the choice of CCP for visual arts and film. To give you a little insight, Snake Sisters tells a story of a man who drifted on an isolated island inhabited by the three sisters. They took turns in having sex with the man, one after the other. Just use your imagination what went on. I tried to sanitize the film of its pornographic scenes, but I gave up kasi walang matitira pag pinutulan ko, not even for a trailer.

    I would like to suggest that candidates for the National Artist Awards must include a criteria on decency of the artist’s works. No criminal who violates the provisions of the Revised Penal Code on decency must be awarded. Writers, filmmakers, novelists, actors, comedians, etc… who are candidates for the award must be thoroughly scrutinized to include their pagkatao, for National Artists must serve as role models for the people to emulate.

    Columnists who do not know the facts and are biased such as Jim Paredes and Patricia Evangelista who wrote a terrible article replete with lies for not being able to see beyond her nose must not further fan the ongoing controversy.

    Magpaliwanag na lang sila or shut their mouths, for they know not what they are saying. At dapat may right to recall ang isang Presidente ng Republika if an awardee does not live up to the honors bestowed upon him. Or at least, cancel the monthly stipend if anyone violates the law.

    That should teach the awardees a lesson to behave as the public expects them to. Otherwise, the awardees can even use the honors bestowed on them by the government to do subversive writings, movies, and so-called “artistic works” to further their harmful and offensive agendas contrary to existing laws.

  8. rouge said,

    August 16, 2009 at 12:47 pm

    at least manosa has an impressive if not monumental architectural works featuring stylized filipino architecture….the coconut palace, san miguel headquarters in ortigas, the ateneo at rockwell, chapels and hundreds of residences all over the country.

    pitoy moreno is pitoy moreno. look at his pina creations, costumes for the bayanihan…well made if not impressive…though, at times outdated.

    but how about alvarez? she may be the founder of PETA….but that was it! any impressive work of art in her name? as executive director of NCCA…..delicadeza lang! she may not be virgilio almario but she must have at least modesty not to accept the award.

    and caparas? amorsolo, leagspi, goquingco,locsin, fuentes, et al must be turning from their graves. i can’t just take looking at this gma running dog sit side by side with bencab, luz, avellana, et al at the ccp.

    after manipulating the congress, blackmailing the judiciary…….the present administration is bastardizing philippine arts and culture! que horror!

  9. manazh said,

    August 16, 2009 at 11:01 am

    Manoling Morato. Isa pa iyan! 3D electric fan! Bumabagyo!

  10. l*ding said,

    August 16, 2009 at 9:55 am

    “I don’t even have any of [Cesar] Legaspi’s works in my collection. I got rid of them. Same with the works of Bencab and Arturo Luz. I won’t hang their works in my collection and desecrate the works of Goya, Van Gogh, Toulouse Lautrec, Picasso and other old masters that I own,” Morato said.

    OOHHH my manoling. my favorite manoling who lived in beverly hills during his teenage years and was taken cared of by Hollywood royalties… I believe Manoling has those masters in his possession. I advise him to keep it as safe as possible knowing that he practically opened his treasure chest to the filipino people. Why on earth did you divulge that you’re only one of the 3 sociedad in tropical Manila that has a Van Gogh!!! Why Manoling Why?

  11. Garganta Inflamada said,

    August 15, 2009 at 9:44 pm


    The Manosas are either negrenses or Tagalogs.

  12. Babblefish said,

    August 12, 2009 at 4:15 am

    Moreno, Guidote-Alvarez, and Caparas are capampangans. Right, Toto?
    Don’t know about Manosa, though.

  13. tutubing_karayom said,

    August 7, 2009 at 12:53 am

    Caparas? National Artist? Hey, what about Andrew E?

  14. tambo said,

    August 5, 2009 at 10:26 am

    when that coffetable book KASALAN came out, the most enduring comment from a very respected connoisseur of fine living was that the book was a complilation of Manila’s most “kuripot” families.
    when asked why, the simple reason given was because there was the living legend Ramon O. Valera still around who was the only choice of the most discriminating de buena familias, when only the best mattered at any cost in very important occasions.
    It is whispered that Inno S. achieved that level of social prominence in that field AND no one else.

  15. asdf said,

    August 5, 2009 at 7:28 am

    why take these titles seriously? why take these characters seriously and be sucked into a maelstorm of much-ado-about-nothing? it’s stuff like this that makes our country what it is!

  16. Jules said,

    August 5, 2009 at 6:36 am

    I wouldn’t wonder
    if Willie R. will likewise be nominated,
    side by side with
    his Pegasus-degree (Quezon Avenue) dancers
    shooing away the Blood & Sweat steps of
    the late Leonor Orosa-Goquingco.

    or perhaps Lito Camo for Music…
    surely Leventritt Gold Medal Recipient
    Cecile Buencamino Licad
    will doubt performing on her
    Annual Homecoming Concert usually every Summer.

    This situation similarly reminds me of the
    Gintong Ina Award given to
    yesteryears ago
    and one apolitical awardee protested and wished
    to simply return the Laurel
    should the Shoe Empress be amongst the roster.


  17. divina said,

    August 3, 2009 at 4:25 pm

    You are right, Larry! Ty. In fact, I now recall Gilda Cordero-Fernando’s theatrical “Jamming on an Old Saya” in the 90’s.

    However, those shows were never done as tributes for individual fashion designers, and the previous fashion shows were mainly used as conceits or devices to promote the country’s image. They were not ends in themselves.

  18. larry leviste said,

    August 3, 2009 at 3:58 am

    Pitash made Gloria’s wedding gown.

    It is said her dad put Mike Ayoko in the BIR to have a job.

    But he was fired. For what else… Corruption !!!

    Even then, they both knew the PREDIDENCY was the end all and BE ALL.

    AND a note, there were the BAGONG ANYO fashion shows in the CCP Main Theater in the late 70’s.

    I was there.

  19. simpleng_tao said,

    August 2, 2009 at 6:10 pm

    Hindi man po ako nakaririwasang katulad ng waring karamihang nagbabasa at nagkokomento sa marangyang blog na ito ni G. Toto Gonzalez, ako man ay nagigimbal at nanghihinayang sa kinahinatnan ng pinagpipitagang gawad ng “National Artist” ng Pilipinas.

    Bagamat ako po ay simpleng tao — isa akong guro sa pampublikong paaralang elementarya sa Tondo — naiintindihan ko naman na mayroon pang mga tagalikha ng sining na higit dapat na parangalan ngayon sa halip ng mga iilang ginawarang “National Artist.”

    Hindi ko po kinokondena ang pagpaparangal sa mga kasalukuyang nanalo. Iniisip ko lamang po na may iilang tagalikha ng sining na dapat nauna ang pagpaparangal.

    Salamat po.

  20. kurosawa.kuno said,

    August 2, 2009 at 5:51 pm

    I don’t know about you people here… but I’m going to start directing “massacre movies” so I can be a National Artist in the future!


  21. divina said,

    August 2, 2009 at 2:58 pm

    An excerpt from an interview…

    His wife, actress-producer Donna Villa, compared Caparas’ current persecution to that of Jesus Christ’s. “Even Jesus Christ was criticized because of his boldness to save mankind from sins,” she said, adding, “’Yang mga critics na ‘yan, wala namang nagagawa ang mga ‘yan. Magtigil na nga sila. Patunayan muna nila ang nagawa ni Carlo sa komiks at sa pelikula. Kahit sa TV.”

  22. Cousin Paz said,

    August 2, 2009 at 12:56 pm

    Read Wilson Flores’ column in the Star today. I can only agree. After Carlo Caparas, we can nominate the following for National Artist in the next few years – Tito Vic and Joey and posthumously, Rene Requiestas! This country is really going to the dogs…

  23. Babblefish said,

    August 2, 2009 at 8:00 am

    Yoyoy Villame for National Artist! There’s one guy appreciated from Luzon to Mindanao.

  24. vic said,

    August 2, 2009 at 5:20 am

    They should considering changing the rules now. With all the brouhaha surrounding the National Artist Award. The president should not be anymore given power to choose whoever she wishes.

  25. tita maldita said,

    August 2, 2009 at 3:29 am

    I have a wonderful idea…

    Why not award Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo as National Artist for Dictatorship [ but make sure to posthumously award Ferdinand Edralin Marcos first!!! ] and Jose Miguel Tuason Arroyo as National Artist for Graft and Corruption???

    That way they get their just desserts.

  26. divina said,

    August 2, 2009 at 2:37 am

    PART 2…

    Cecile Alvarez was the founder of PETA (Philippine Educational Theater Association). That is her mark in the Philippine art scene.

    She is also the CURRENT head of the NCCA. One of the 2 institutions that administer the National Artist Awards.

    But one must distinguish the difference between an administrator and an artist. Her contributions lie in the field of organization. NOT artistry.

    And if she has any delicadeza, she would turn down the award. Unless it’s true that she actually “inserted” her name in to the list and added Carlo J. Caparas to diffuse the undue attention that she would get from all the brouhaha.

  27. divina said,

    August 2, 2009 at 2:27 am

    PART 1…

    For many years, La Pitash has been actively campaigning to be National Artist. There was NO category for the field of fashion in the National Artists Awards for the simple reason that fashion had not been considered a Fine Art (but that is another argument altogether).

    Enter N*dy T*ntoco et al.

    Funds had to be raised for the cash-strapped CCP. The ladies in the board, headed by N*dy T*ntoco suggested a “fashion show” to lure big donors to rally behind this “noble” cause. Sure enough, matrons scrambled to get themselves involved in the project… not merely as donors, but as models of Pitash’s “baul” collection as well.

    But wait! No fashion show had ever been “officially” staged by the art institution before. Even Madame’s fashion shows on the 70’s were done in the complex’s less prestigious venues like the Folk Arts Theater.

    Unfortunately, the CCP needed the funds and it had to respect the means by which its benefactors wished to cough up the cash. And so the show went on… with a degree of success in bringing in the dough.

    Emboldened by this great leap forward, fashion supporters lobbied for the addition of a new category in the National Artists Awards. They argued that fashion (albeit a customer-driven craft), is slowly being recognized as an art form by many art institutions abroad.

    The first National Artist for Fashion was awarded to Ramon Valera. In the same year, lobbyists for La Pitash, Aur*o Alonzo and the late Jo Salazar vied for the chance to present their respective manoks’ credentials. Press releases about each person’s string of achievements were very visible during this “campaign” period.

    Two years after, another round of nominations and deliberations by the CCP and NCCA were conducted to identify National Artists. NO fashion designer made it to the final cut.

    But close ties to the president would prove to be the most effective way of obtaining the once prestigious award. After all, La Pitash did the clothes of GMA’s mother. And La Pitash did GMA’s infamous orchidarium terno, when she was inducted as vice president.

  28. angela said,

    August 1, 2009 at 6:00 pm

    email from leo martinez on caparas:


    Some weeks back, news was rife about the National Artist Awardees awaiting
    confirmation by Malacañang. Cited as National Artist for Film, albeit
    posthumously, was Manuel Conde. We at the Film Academy of the Philippines
    had nominated Director Celso Ad. Castillo, but really, nobody can dispute
    Mr. Conde¹s place in Philippine cinema¹s history. We believe that even
    Director Castillo who is similarly deserving of the award will graciously
    acknowledge the greatness of the man.

    Two days ago, the confirmation was finally announced and to our surprise and to the surprise of many in the film industry, the National Artist Award for
    Film was also conferred on Carlo Caparas. Not only that, he was bestowed
    the National Artist Award for Film AND Visual Arts.

    So, where did he come from? Throughout the long and exacting selection
    process, Carlo Caparas was never ever mentioned as nominee, not for film and surely not for visual arts. All of a sudden, he is a National Artist and
    seemingly the most gifted of all for straddling two major art fields.

    There only seems to be one answer to this mystery. Between the Awards
    selection panels and us, the people, the list of awardees made a stop-over
    in Malacañang. Someone waved the magic wand and a name appeared, a person who never went through the incisive and deliberate scrutiny that the rest of the awardees were subjected to by the Awards organizers. I believe that this is an act of blatant accommodation.

    Conferring the highest award on someone who was never in the running makes a travesty of the National Artists Awards, an institution that has been looked up to, venerated even for the recognition it gives to Filipinos whose body of works or whose contribution to the Filipino people is of the highest
    order. We have as this year¹s awardees Manuel Conde for Film and Federico Alcuaz for Visual Arts. Both are commendable, both beyond question. It has never been done before but had the Organizers wanted to give the same award to more than one person, why not consider the other most deserving nominees. Instead, and to our utter disgust, a new category was coined and the two most prestigious awards for Film and Visual Arts were conferred on Carlo Caparas.

    It is a pity that the National Artist Award has been reduced to a joke.

    Director General
    Film Academy of the Philippines

  29. SOB said,

    August 1, 2009 at 4:45 pm

    Don’t you guys know???

    Carlo J. Caparas will soon be filming “The Gloria Macapagal and Mike Arroyo Tragedy: God save the Philippines!” and soon after, “The Cultural Center of the Philippines Tragedy: God save us from GMA!”

    Coming soon at your favorite IMAX theaters!!! ;P

  30. zippo said,

    August 1, 2009 at 3:43 pm

    I can take Mañosa and even Moreno as National Artists. But Alvarez?!! She is the head of the National Commission for the Arts — the very office which recommends artists for the award. Where’s the delicadeza? And don’t even get me started with Caparas. How can a director of such cheap flicks like “The Marita Gonzaga Rape-Slay: In God We Trust” become a National Artist?!!!

  31. egarcia said,

    August 1, 2009 at 3:40 pm

    Carlo Caparas, National Artist? Why????????????????

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