Artists call for action against climate change

By Barbie Salvador

Posted at Feb 26 2014 08:53 PM | Updated as of Feb 27 2014 04:55 AM

"Displaced Earth" by Veejay Villafranca

MANILA -- A mix of young and veteran Filipino artists put together over 100 artworks to call for action against climate change in the exhibit "Palette for Nature," a project by Earth Day Network Philippines, Inc. (EDNPI) and vMeme Contemporary Arts Gallery, which opened at SM Southmall.

Among those who participated are National Artist Napoleon Abueva, Ramon Orlina, Francisco Verano, Ernie Patricio, Cana, Edgar Talusan Fernandez, Pablo Baens Santos, Veejay Villafranca, Resty Flores, Kay Malilong-Isberto, Kermit Tesoro, Crown Dolot, Little Wing Luna and Jo A. Santos.

While Super Typhoon Haiyan (local name: Yolanda) definitely caught everybody’s attention about the real and dire effects of climate change, EDNPI, a group fighting to protect and conserve the earth, has been putting up various awareness campaigns to realize social change even before the storm wreaked havoc last November.

Climate change commissioner Sonny Alvarez graced the event to help ordinary Filipinos understand the climate change problem.

EDNPI president Roberto Guevarra also explained significant ways citizens can help delay disastrous effects of global warming, as he urged everyone to reduce carbon footprint by utilizing greener transportation, buying local produce and joining the Meatless Monday, a campaign to avoid eating meat once a week.

Anthony Cosue, assistant mall manager for SM Southmall, also expressed support for the campaign, while guest of honor Congressman Jose Atienza talked about the vital importance of installing government systems to enact real change.

Light box installations by Veejay Villafranca

Exhibit curator Avie Felix, who is also the owner of vMEME Contemporary Arts Gallery, said "Palette for Nature" showed both picturesque and critical paintings about our environment.

For instance, watercolor artist, Ernie Patricio, worked on his nostalgic memories of his hometown of Malabon.

The exhibit, which is also a memorial for art patron and EDNPI founder Odette Alcantara, also shows viewers what used to be, what we wish we would have and what horrors we could face if we do not do something about it now.

After the ceremonial ribbon cutting, guests as well as casual mallgoers experienced artsy treats as they enjoyed live piano music while looking at sculptures, light box installations and paintings.

Artists led by Ernie Patricio of Agos Kulay Watercolor Society and the Las Pinas Artists Group also did a sketch and painting demonstration.

"Palette for Nature" can now be seen at SM BF Paranaque until March 2. Part of the proceeds from this exhibit will benefit EDNPI’s reforestation project in a watershed in Barangay Sta.Monica, Tagkawayan, Quezon.