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“Philippine Design Exhibition” of Furniture and Home Décor Showcases Filipino Creativity and Excellence

17 February 2015 – Ambassador Manuel M. Lopez opened the “Philippine Design Exhibition” of furniture and home décor at the Tokyo Midtown Design Hub which he described as a venue to showcase in the world stage the Filipino excellence, ingenuity and unique creativity.

In his remarks before some 100 quests from Japanese corporations and importers, Amb. Lopez said “this path of creativity and tradition of excellence continues to be proudly carried by all the designers featured in this exhibit today – how their works reflect life, nature, the human spirit and this generation’s responsibility to preserve the environment.”

 The design exhibit is open to the public until 01 March 2015 with the items on display exemplifying the craftsmanship of the Filipino designer to capture the beauty of nature and use locally sourced and environmentally sound materials. “Philippine designers pool their God-given talents to foster greater awareness and appreciation of the value of design – specially how ideas add value to products and the quality of human life and how innovation promotes linkages between world-wide communities. Designers exemplify the philosophy that dreams should be bigger, allow to travel further and create new things that mange to keep this world a constant place of wonder,” Amb. Lopez said.

Mr. Motomi Kawakami, Chairman of the Japan Institute of Design Promotion (JDP), congratulated the Embassy and its Trade and Investment Office for organizing the “Philippine Design Exhibition” that brought to Japan the furniture and décor of Filipino designers. The exhibit was supported by the ASEAN Japan Centre, represented in the opening ceremony by Secretary-General Yoshikuni Ohnishi.

Following the remarks, Amb. Lopez led in the ribbon cutting ceremony joined in by Mr. Kawakami, Secretary-General Ohnishi, Mr. Kazunori Iizuka, President of JDP; Ms. Myrna Sunico, Executive Director of the Design Center of the Philippines, Mr. Shiro Aoki, Executive Director of JDP; and Philippine designer Ms. Anne Pamintuan (photo below).

The design exhibition featured the furniture and décor by renowned Filipino designers Al Caronan, Ann Pamintuan, Antonio “Budji’ Layug, Carlo Cordaro, Kenneth Cobonpue, Luisa Robinson, Maria Cristina “Maricris” Floirendo-Brias, Miguel Carlos Aguas, Milo Naval, Renato Vidal, Rene Alcala, Tes Pasola, Tony Gonzales and Vito Selma. Ms. Pamintuan was the first Asian woman designer to be featured in the International Design Yearbook. Mr. Cobonpue, who has been honored by the JDP with five Good Design Awards, earned the title of Rattan’s First Virtuoso from Time Magazine. The exhibition was organized by the Office of Trade and Investment, Philippine Embassy, headed by Commercial Counsellor Maria Bernardita Angara-Mathay, and attended by 14 exporters representing various regions of the Philippines who promote Philippine artistry and craftsmanship. (Photo above at left)

The products on display are inspired by nature’s organic and biomorphic forms and transformed into contemporary man-made objects. They were made with sustainable materials from the Philippines – fibers (abaca, sinamay, anahaw, jusi), vines (rattan, nito), textiles (inabel, T’nalak), paper, coconut, shells, wood, and metal. They are arranged in collages as dyed, braided, and woven, among other techniques, with the craftsmanship of highly-skilled hands of Filipino artisans working in current production methods.

The products featured in the exhibition are designed by Movement 8, an alliance of designers who have the passion to share their talent and creativity to forward Philippine design to the world. Each designer has his or her own unique qualities that transcend competition as they are united in sharing a manifold of resources and talents. Each has received recognition and respect from their contemporaries in the design field both locally and abroad.

From an original group of eight designers, Movement 8 has expanded not just in number but also in reaching out to other designers who share their passion. Its expansion signifies the purpose of using “8” that signifies infinity – in connection, talent, creativity, and design purpose. This exhibition is aimed at showing to the world the innate and unparalleled creativity that is not only “from the Philippines” but also “of the Philippines”.

The exhibition is open to the public from 18 February to 01 March 2015 at the Tokyo Midtown Design Hub and held with the participation of the Japan Institute of Design Promotion, Japan Graphic Designers Association Inc., and Musashino Art University. The other products of “Movement 8” are shown in the following photo collage.

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