WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Philippine Embassy proudly unveiled the The Great Promenade of Philippine-American Friendship, a mural by Filipino artist Dominic Rubio, and other works of art at the Chancery Annex building on June 10, Friday.
Philippine Ambassador to the United States Jose L. Cuisia, Jr. and his wife, Madam Maria Victoria Cuisia led the unveiling ceremony.
According to Ambassador, “The Great Promenade of Philippine-American Friendship tells the story of the enduring ties between the Philippines and the United States. Its depiction of key events in Philippines-US relations reminds the viewer that more than the political, security and economic interests, it is the shared history and values that bind our nations. As our two countries celebrate seventy years of formal diplomatic relations, let us remember that the mutual respect and affection between Filipinos and Americans, forged by more than a century of pursuing common aspirations, have intertwined our fate much more effectively than consequences of strategic calculation.”
The Great Promenade is 8 x 27 feet in size and was created by Dominic Rubio, a native of Paete, Laguna. Rubio’s signature images of men and women with long, pencil-thin necks and lollipop heads portrayed during Spanish colonial times have made him a favorite of collectors in Asia and North America.
Speaking in Filipino, Rubio expressed gratitude to Ambassador and Madam Cuisia for giving him the opportunity to fulfill his dream of creating a mural.
Ambassador Cuisia noted that the success of the entire project was due to the collaborative efforts of individuals and institutions “that believe in the power of the arts to transform mindsets and change the world.”
Among those he mentioned were Pilipinas Shell Foundation, FedEx, Ms. Doris Magsaysay Ho, Mr. Washington Sycip, Mr. Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, Makati Business Club, US-Philippines Business Council, and Mr. Jack Teotico of Galerie Joaquin.
The envoy and guests also acknowledged the efforts of Madam Maria Victoria Cuisia to elevate the status of Philippine arts and culture among American and international audiences.
Apart from the mural, other donated art works were also presented to the public for the first time, including the garden sculpture, Mist, by Impy Pilapil; the bust of Dr. Jose Rizal from the National Historical Commission of the Philippines; the Cocoon Series by Ann Pamintuan; and Joey Manlapaz’ Photorealism that is placed on the second floor of the Chancery Annex building. Kenneth Cobonpue’s Fandango and Cucme lamps bathes the interior with soft lighting while Maja Olivares-Co’s monochromatic seal of the Philippine Embassy welcomes the public in the main receiving area.