Finally, I had the opportunity to visit the hometown of two great national artists. Angono is a bayside town in the Province of Rizal, known as the Art Capital of the Philippines. As evidence to that, they have produced two distinguished national artists who are actually cousins: Carlos Botong Francisco and Maestro Lucio San Pedro. Both are authorities and respected in their own fields. Botong Francisco, is a muralist for three decades. His works are notable in depicting the momentous Philippine historical events and folk values. On the other hand, Maestro Lucio San Pedro is a master composer,conductor and a teacher. His most popular composition is Ugoy ng Duyan.
The house of Master Lucio San Pedro, fenced with his lyrical compositions.
Angono is also the hometown of reknowned painter and sculptor, Nemesio R. Miranda. I did not miss the opportunity to visit the Nemiranda House and Art Gallery. Indeed this house is a destination in itself. Huge images of Malakas and Maganda welcomed us at the corner of the street leading to the entrance of their house.
Malakas and Maganda
At right side of gate entrance, a woman sculpture is also worthy to look at and accordingly she is Reyna Amihan.
And Haring Habagat too.
A sculpture of a mermaid is also noticeable, when one enters into the door where the paintings are situated. Angono is a farm and fishing village, hence the rationale behind the mermaid sculpture.
This admirable fellow is a working genius with a cause. One could see in his works of art, his love for his country and his hometown. His efforts to promote tourism in Angono, showcasing it as the Art Capital of the Philippines is admirable. The two storey building is filled with his works of art. Interestingly, his children are also into painting, there is a room at the second floor where the works of his children are displayed. He calls his art as “Imaginative Figurism,” a master of the Human Form who draws his figure through pure imagination.
EDSA II Sculpture by Nemiranda
One interesting street in Angono is the long stretch of Dona Aurora, where Botong Francisco used to live. The houses along the street are fenced with murals. These Murals depict the work of Botong. The community relives the Botong spirit through these walls, walls that continue to inspire the emerging young angono artists.
We also wanted to eat at Balaw -Balaw, restaurant famed for serving exotic foods. Aside from the food served, the restaurant also houses a gallery of paintings. We are not fans of exotic foods, and so we opted to order Sinigang na Tinola and Ensaladang Talong with balaw-balaw ( fermented shrimp paste). I love Filipino dishes Sinigang being one of my favorites, I always order it whenever I travel. Their chicken sinigang is one of the best I have ever tasted. Really a must to try. Promise! Their sinigang soup is just so right, using real tamarind fruit and tamato to give a genuine sour taste. The umami and sour taste combines perfectly, and I love every sipped of my soup.
Must try Chicken Sinigang at Balaw-Balaw Retaurant.
We ended our day at the lakeside, to have a feel of serene environment as the sun sets.