By pursuing his quest for what can be regarded as Philippine Architecture and the Filipino design, Mañosa did not only rebuilt the native hut bahay kubo and the colonial bahay na bato concept but delved deeper into the essence of the simple hut and the assimilation of colonial influences that marked our Filipino heritage to create and elevate these structures into modern contemporary landscapes.
Arnaiz House, Punta Fuego, Batangas, 2000
Coconut shell chandeliers, rice paper wrappers as glass top
and thousands of multicolored coconut shells inlay
I remember my family proudly touring all our local and foreign guests
in this beautiful mansion long before I met the Mañosa family.
Mañosa Residence, Alabang, 1983
Notice the wall-less "silong" (basement) and living areas
maximizing natural light and ventilation!
I witnessed several events in this beautiful house
and I continue to marvel at its multi-functional spaces.
Ateneo Professional School, Makati, 2000
Notice the open spaces and natural light!
Mary Immaculate Parish, Las Piñas, 1988
Notice the white capiz shell doves flying and providing light!
Hofileña House, Paranaque, 1997
Mañosa’s excellence and dedication to his art are generously shared by more than a hundred architects, artists and craftsmen who worked and collaborated with him through the years. Mañosa’s impressive list of architectural landmarks are recognized by local and international groups like the United Architects of the Philippines (UAP) who conferred on Mañosa the highest award given to a Fellow of the UAP: Likha Gold Medal Award and the Design Award for Architecture (from 1994 to 1997!), the Gawad CCP Para sa Sining (Architecture), the Asia-Pacific Interior Design Award, the Department of Tourism’s Kalakbay Award, the City of Manila’s Patnubay ng Kalinangan Award, Gallivanter’s Award for Excellence, and Asiaweek’s one of seven visionaries in Asian architecture.
"The Order of National Artists
is one of the Honors of the
that embodies the nation’s highest ideals
in humanism and aesthetic expression
through the distinct achievements of individual citizens.
While the Republic bestows due recognition
to these singular achievements,
it in turn honors its own cultural heritage,
whose enrichment these achievements
have significantly effected, enhanced, and given direction.
These achievements are measured in terms of their vision,
unusual insight, creativity and imagination,
technical proficiency of the highest order in expressing
Filipino culture and traditions,
history, way of life, and aspirations"
The guidelines for the nomination for the Order of National Artists are as follows:
Artists who have pioneered in a mode of creative expression or style, thus, earning distinction and making an impact on succeeding generations of artists;
Artists who have created a substantial and significant body of works and/or consistently displayed excellence in the practice of their art form thus enriching artistic expression or style; and
Artists who enjoy broad acceptance through: prestigious national and/or international recognition, such as the Gawad CCP Para sa Sining, CCP Thirteen Artists Award and NCCA Alab ng Haraya; critical acclaim and/or reviews of their works; respect and esteem from peers.
Great artists transcend the material and bare their souls to craft great works of art. Mañosa did no less. Great architecture are like frozen sculptures, like a grand symphony of an orchestra in perfect harmony, the effortless ballerina on tiptoe defying gravity and expressing profound movements in a dance, and the significant murals that embody the spirit and thought of a true artist. A true artist creates works of art that must be honored, preserved and promoted as treasures of our land.
Architect Francisco Mañosa is a National Artist
and he deserves nothing less.
Updated August 26: I failed to nominate Architect Mañosa because I missed the deadline and failed to read the public announcement of its submission. I am also not qualified to submit my nomination as an individual but I would have submitted mine directly to the Office of the President together with the signatures of people who wanted to nominate him too. This is the gray area in the process which must be reviewed. All nominations not accepted by the panel of experts can be considered by the President for review. An individual MUST be able to nominate as long as he can accompany his nomination with supporting signatures from other individuals. I can easily gather signatures from a National Artist, professionals like doctors, lawyers, engineers, architects, bankers, the religious, students, community leaders, artists, art managers, cultural workers, and the public! etc. Architect Mañosa was nominated by his peers and bypassed even by the institution who awarded him a Gawad Sining for Architecture. Something is definitely wrong with the process and when that happens, you can not call that DUE PROCESS. It is now the Court's turn to study ALL nominations that passed for review and evaluate if proper selection was indeed exercised by ALL the panel of experts. To put the matters into the hands of the Supreme Court now sets an important precedent and hopefully put the process under review. Please check my August 13 post on the National Artist Award too.
NOTE: Images used in this post were taken from the book on Architect Mañosa : Designing Filipino by Eric Caruncho published by the Tukod Foundation in 2003. I hope the publisher and the Mañosa family will accept my apologies for using the materials in the book to properly illustrate my statements. A clear and beautiful presentation of Architect Mañosa's works and philosophies on art can be found in this book which is a collector’s item and can be accessed through his site at www.mañosa.com