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Galeria Paloma holds online benefit auction

PLENTEOUS, a handmade chair made of recycled materials by Ken Samudio and Seph Bagasao (left) and Julie Lluch’s cold cast marble piece, Georgia Lily (right) are two of the artworks being auctioned for charity.

FOR many young, disadvantaged women, higher education is but a pipe dream. Galeria Paloma is holding an auction for the benefit of such women, in partnership with the scholarship grant program U-Go.

Titled The Gallery of Giving, the auction includes works of art, objets d’art, and jewelry by notable artists and designers. The onsite exhibition and viewing of lots is ongoing at the ArtistSpace, Ayala Museum Annex, Makati Ave. corner De La Rosa St., Makati City, until March 26.

There are works of art by sculptor Julie Lluch, painter Onib Olmedo, National Artist for Music Ryan Cayabyab, Soler Santos, Bjorn Calleja, CCP Thirteen Artists Awardee Ernest Concepcion, Carina Santos, Isabel Echevarria, Lina Llaguno-Ciani, Aba Dalena, Martin and Barbie Honasan, Basti Artadi, Sarah de Veyra-Buyco, Hamill Buyco, and Carlos, and many others.

One section features works by digital artists Luis Buenaventura, Skye Nicolas, AJ Dimarucot, and Isaiah Cacnio. Jewelry by designer JJ Jiao is also being auctioned, with each piece showcasing filigree patterns and intricate details.

The online auction itself runs until April 10. Resulting funds will be channeled through U-Go, which has helped 120 women within the almost-two-year period it has operated in the Philippines.

ART FOR EDUCATIONIn a press conference on March 6 in Makati, Galeria Paloma highlighted how the artworks, already valuable on their own, represent a greater ideal when paired with the cause.

Julie Lluch’s sculpture Georgia Lily will be among the pieces on the auction block. The feminist work builds on iconic artist Georgia O’Keefe’s abstract flower paintings. Ms. Lluch’s signature sculptural style embodies both fragility and strength, a suitable piece to showcase for International Women’s Month.

The Widow by expressionist Onib Olmedo is equally interesting. Previously exhibited at the artist’s retrospective in Ayala Museum, it was lauded for its poignant and haunting portrayal of longing. Mr. Olmedo’s watercolor works Portrait and Flowers are paired together for the auction.

Among the notable digital art offerings is Skye Nicolas’ Don’t You Worry About the Situation [WM-17], a pixel painting that remixes an image into its essential structure. It is paired with an original Sony WM-F17 Walkman with a mixtape compiled by Mr. Nicolas.

Ken Samudio and Seph Bagasao, two designers collaborating on an environmentally ethical piece, are also featured in the auction. Their handmade chair Plenteous, put together from vintage beads and other recycled materials, is in the spotlight.

“As a gallery run by three women directors, whose mother was once a gallery director herself but found her calling as a steadfast educator, U-Go was a cause that we knew we could champion from the start,” said Kimberly Rocha-Delgado, one of the co-directors of Galeria Paloma.

U-GO IN THE PHILIPPINESProceeds from the auction will support women from disadvantaged backgrounds in their efforts to pursue higher education through U-Go. The global program is being implemented in the Philippines by Ayala Foundation.

“Access to education could be a meaningful equalizer for Filipinos. I’m excited by the possibilities of what quality education can bring, not just for women in the country, not just for their families and communities, but also in bringing the most empowered economy forward,” said U-Go board director Mariana Zobel at the press conference.

From the initial batch of 410 students that were awarded U-Go scholarships, the goal is to more than double that to 1,000 scholars in the next few years, she added.

On a personal note, Ms. Zobel said that the auction and the fact that its proceeds are going to underprivileged women meant a lot to her.

“I’m someone who has benefited from an education without cost, so for me it’s especially meaningful to pay that forward and give other women the same freedom that I felt as I explored my own education opportunities,” she said.

The auction is ongoing online via galeriapaloma.com/auction until April 10. Interested bidders are encouraged to visit the exhibition at ArtistSpace until March 26. For queries, e-mail contact@galeriapaloma.com. — Brontë H. Lacsamana

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