A Catalogue of 100 Women Artists

Manila Bulletin, April 29, 2005 | Go to article overview

A Catalogue of 100 Women Artists


TO mark the centennial of the Feminist Movement in the Philippines, Leonarda N. Camacho, ecologist, environmentalist and civic leader who heads the Metro Manila Linis-Ganda Movement, has come out with a catalogue entitled "100 Years: 100 Women Artists."

The feminist movement 1905-2005 is a hundred years old and Mrs. Camacho proudly points out that whereas it took the American women 100 years to attain suffrage, it took the Filipino women only 16 years from 1921 to 1937 to attain theirs.

Before proceedings to a catalogue of Filipino women artists, Mrs. Camacho names women who distinguished themselves in agriculture, business, dentistry, invention, medicine, law, journalism, literature, music, nursing, social work, and public service.

Certain unusual occupations, careers, and distinctions are listed. For example: 22- year-old cadet Christy Achangar is the first Filipina to handle the tough US Military Academy examinations (2004). Myrna Galang Daite is the first Filipina marine officer third mate on the mm Ramon Aboitiz cargo freighter. Hanna Lea Alberta and Rae Leanne Dacanay are the first Filipinas to graduate from the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland.

Hadja Bainon Karon bravely set up a training center for women all victims of the Mindanao war in Kakar, Poblacion 8, Cotabato City.

Here are others: Catherine Marie Castillo, first women captain of a commercial aircraft, Cebu Pacific Air; Mayra Florencio, first officer; Alia Jalmasan, flight dispatcher. Capt. Irene Mora, first Filipina cadet, now in Russia preparing to rocket to the International Space Station 2005. Mora is also a skydiver.

Leonarda Olat Capuyan of Benguet Province brought to world attention the indigenous fabric of the mountain tribes in the Cordillera Region. She exports woven tapestries, mats, shawls, scarves, rugs, bags, placemats all hand-made by the indigenous tribes.

Of Filipino women in various careers and profession, the freest and most liberated are probably the actresses, both onstage and on the screen, and the visual artists. It must have taken Mrs. Camacho much time and a great deal of effort, resourcefulness, and ingenuity to trace them to their homes or studios. The catalogue of 100 women artists, which bears messages from President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, CCP President Nestor Jardin, and CCP Vice President and Artistic Director Nanding Josef, will serve as useful reference material for future generations of artists and artlovers.

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