Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas CD's I Listened this Christmas 2009

David Lanz, The Christmas Album- It is little wonder that Lanz's two previous seasonal recording are among the top sellers in the Narada library. His live piano interpretation of familiar songs such as "Silent Night" and "What Child Is This?" as well as not-so-familiar instruments such as "Dreamer's Waltz" are more emotional than all the words used to describe them. Lush won't do it - brilliant would be better. Even Scrooge would have caved in to sentiment after hearing this.

New Age - Although new age music in its acoustical incarnation, is sometimes derided as "jazz without benefit of improvisation," that jibe can work to the listener's advantage on Christmas albums. For example when David Lanz expands on seasonal favorites on his holiday best-of, The Christmas Album (Narada), his modestly virtuosic ornamentation reinforces rater than obscures the themes, making his renditions of "Silent Night" and "What Child Is This?" quietly compelling.

David Lanz, Christmas Eve-"Winter is the time when Mother Earth takes a breath inward, and I believe it very natural for us to pause and do the same -- to allow ourselves time for introspection amidst all the celebration and activity of the holidays. The music on Christmas Eve was created during such a time in my own life.

Though the arrangements for some of these carols and the idea for the album began in the winter of 1990, most of the work and all of the recording offered at home during an "extended Christmas respite" that followed a very rigorous touring schedule during most of 1993.

"As the work progressed and each carol developed from fragments and wisps into finished works, I imagined that an Angel, a Guardian Angel of sorts, existed for each of the songs. These Angels seemed to guide my hand and heart throughout the process. They also resulted in the seven "Angel improvisations" threaded between the carols. Musical inward breaths.

If the music encourages your own quiet introspections, that was my hope and intention. This mood is surely the very essence of the spirit of the holiday. But if you do take that inward breath, don't be surprised if you feel a light brush of Angel wings and hear the softest of whispers..."

Peace, Jim Brickman’s second collection of holiday-themed music, is largely a mirror image of his first (The Gift, released in 1997). Both feature a mix of solo piano works, augmented piano selections (involving oboe, strings, synthesizers, a pop-jazz ensemble, or some combination thereof) and glossy, radio-ready pop vocal productions. To some ears, the polished sheen of the vocal tracks (four are included) may infringe on the more contemplative mood of Brickman’s instrumental tracks, the way a city’s after-dark glow can seep into your view of a deep night sky’s canopy of stars. Still, as with The Gift, Peace is an attractive mood-setter for the season. Brickman’s best arrangements will resonate with a listener’s introspective sensibilities. "Jingle Bells," "Away in a Manger," and "We Three Kings," for instance, all receive slow-building, reflective treatments that might prod you into pondering deeper meanings. A pair of nonholiday originals, "Early Snowfall" and "Blessings," achieve the same heart-nudging effect. As for the vocals, The Blind Boys of Alabama reinforce the finger-snapping, muted-trumpet, ‘40s-swing vibe of "Let It Snow;" Kristy Starling takes a sweetly romantic turn on "Sending You a Little Christmas;" and country’s Collin Raye (also featured on The Gift) earnestly conveys the clear-eyed optimism of the title track.

Liverpool: Re-imagining the Beatles- David Lanz Newest Album

I'm a big David Lanz fan, and have 29 of his 31 CD albums. The newest one, Liverpool: Re-imagining the Beatles is already finished and will be available early next year. This is highly anticipated album for me, cuz I'm also an avid Beatles CD collector (I have the complete Beatles collection).

Liverpool...the birthplace of John, Paul, George, and Ringo, and where we begin our musical journey.

The sounds of the Mersey harbor can be heard as it introduces the first strains of the opening song. This title track was composed as a tribute, an emotional overture of sorts, imbued with subtle musical phrasing from The Fab Four.

From here, we traverse through a decade of Lennon and McCartney songs, arranged and re-imagined through the lens of my own musical voice, which admittedly, has been joyfully shaped and informed by this great and enduring legacy of musical history…a time so explosive and fruitful we may never see anything like it again.

I spent nearly half a year listening, selecting and arranging the material to be recorded on Liverpool. The recording sessions began in May of 2009 and carried on through the fall.

Once the lion’s share of the recording was complete, and on the insistence of my friend and collaborator Gary Stroutsos, we, along with photographer and personal assistant, Carole May, took off on a pilgrimage to Liverpool England, to see where the music of the Beatles all began.

Once there, we were given an extraordinary tour by England’s National Trust. It started with an intimate inside look at John Lennon’s boyhood home where he lived from the age of five until he was twenty-three.

I was completely taken off guard at the impact the spirit of place had on me. This was especially true when I climbed the stairs and stood by myself in the small bedroom that had been John’s, the room where he had done much of his early imaginative dreaming. Chills ran through me and ghosts from the past were palpable.

It was here in this house named Mendips that 14-year-old Paul McCartney and 17-year-old John Lennon began their friendship and started a song writing partnership that would change the world.

They also soon began meeting and writing songs in Paul McCartney’s more modest home, less than a mile away from Mendips, at 20 Forthlin Road.

Our tour continued through the McCartney home. One of the outstanding features was the black and white original photographs taken by Paul’s younger brother, Michael . . . photos capturing family, friends, and everyday household events. Most notable was a photograph of the two teenage musicians, sitting in Paul’s small living room, holding guitars, notebook opened to the hand written lyrics of an early Lennon and McCartney classic, “I Saw Her Standing There.”

I am so grateful for the chance to have connected in such an intimate way and to have come full circle with two of my greatest musical role models.

I will never forget the time spent in Liverpool: the drive down Penny Lane, standing by the gate at Strawberry Fields . . . all giving new meaning and greater dimension to the music of the Beatles.

“There are places I remember . . . All my life”

Friday, December 4, 2009

Visual Fusion- A Group Exhibit

Everyone is cordially invited to view the group exhibit- Visual Fusion- by artists, Seb Chua, Fr. Jason Dy, Sio Montera, Celso Pepito, Lito Pepito, Ritchie Quijano and Jobril Villaver. The opening will be on December 5, at 6pm SM art Center, Cebu City. Exhibit runs until December 14, 2009.

Seven artists with different modes of expressions pursuing art on different styles and understanding life in their field of experiences. The opportunity to be united in one show is to create a sense of unity even in diverse mode of artistry. It also hopes to showcase the gradual transformation of Cebu's art from its conservatvie vein into understanding the need evolve, experiment and create a contemporary artistic revolution. Above all it aims at giving the art loving public the chance to participate in molding a society with utmost artistic understanding.

As the exhibiting artists are pursuing its own individual journey, the possibility of being together in Visual Fusion Exhibit will seek to demonstrate the importance of unity beyond diversity. It hopes to stir the level of artistic understanding and patronage that will ensure the continuing search of excellence in the filed of visual arts, Lastly, it also hopes to impart on the importance of adopting ones artistic evolution.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Magsaysay: Healing with Music and Medicine

He was playing Mozart on the piano, his fingers caressing the keys like a lover. Piano was his first love, his first teacher was Anita Cabahug Trasmonte who rapped his wrists and knuckles to keep them in line. Be a doctor, his father, Engr. Vic Avanzado, told him, don’t be a musician. And because he was a good son, he obeyed his father.

Now Vicente Avanzado Jr. is a full-fledged doctor of medicine, in fact a fellow and a diplomate in Gastroenterology.

Goodlooking with a smiling personality and yes, he still plays the piano.

Beautifully. Music "relaxes and inspires" him and he believes "music and medicine are alike, both need continuous study and both can heal." To celebrate Ting’s successful entry into the rarefied medical clique of fellows (he completed his fellowship at U.E. Ramon Magsaysay Memorial Medical Center) and of diplomates (passed both oral and written exams given by the Philippine Society of Gastroenterology and the Philippine Society of Digestive Endoscopy), Nestor and Gingging Morelos called together kissing cousins and special friends to share their joy. Lechonada, roast calf, the works.

Congratulating Nestor, he asked, why me? Why not Nestor indeed? He is a genial host, has the salesman’s glib camaraderie, a marvelous sense of humor and he simply dotes on Ting, his son-in-law. Gingging, sparkling and bubbly like champagne, likewise adores Inting but most of all she loves Grace, warm and loving, the apple of their eyes upon whom the sun rises and sets who is so full of grace, blessed with the good sense and sensibility to choose the ideal man for her husband.

Kissing cousins are the Garcia clan, Gingging and Nestor having practically become an extended family. Nothing but the impressive baronial residence of former DOTC Secretary Sonny and Armi Garcia, would serve as the perfect setting for the party. Up in Windy Hills, the massive manse of plate glass and concrete overlooked a grand view of city lights, a dazzling scatter of multi-colored gems strewn below. Ninette Garcia, never looking as lovely, was showing off a new fashion find.

Modeling for Lotlot and Sandy Neri’s (Nelia’s daughters-in-law) latest discovery, blouses with a magical twist. Made from the banana fiber, similar to pinokpok but wrinkle-free and dyed in such attractive colors, the blouses are convertible as Ninette prancing prettily twisted them into kimonos, halter tops, off the shoulder shawls, strapless bustiers. Ninette’s own daughter-in-law Christine, who turns out bridal tiaras that are sold out in the States, passed on the info that TV celebrity Martha Stewart, wore such a blouse and gave it an enthusiastic blurb on her TV show.

Special friends of Ting and Grace who turned out for the celebration are colleagues Dr. Renald and Araceli Ramiro, Dr. Evan and Nenette Mendoza, Dr. Manjo and Dr. Leah Villamor, Dr. Ron Eullaran. Ginging’s own special friends with whom she shares common interests from analyzing gospel truths in the Bible, to the dreadful prospect of osteoporosis, alzheimers, arthritis in the foreseeable future were in happy attendance: Tita Zosa, Sony Velez, Gloria Bacay, Remy Barrera, Laling Javier, Violy Nacar, Vilma Hermosisima, among them and at finger-waving distance, Anita San Jose looking simply gorgeous in turquoise, she rated second looks. ‘Kissingest’ cousin of all and my own special friend was Inday Vivera Muñasque.

Been ages since I last saw Inday and except for a few smile lines around the eyes and mouth, she looks still looks like the absolute living doll she was when she was my bridesmaid over 50 years ago. Keeping track of her career and family life through the years proved to be as difficult keeping pace with her breathless mile-a-minute narration. She had been Director of the National Library, a something or other with Ayala Museum, the consultant of the military library and now a commissioner of the National Commission of Arts and Culture. An early morning call from Sonny Osmeña for assistance in research of the First Philippine Assembly, another call from Annie Aboitiz, with whom Inday shared an apartment in New York. Glossing over my busybody query about Stimson (yes, they’re great friends again) and how it feels to be an instant multi-millionaire (she and siblings inherited from her parents), she enthused instead about brother Dodong now retired from his medical practice in Park Avenue but still keeps his plush digs in New York, travels everywhere, haunts book stores, art galleries, gourmet restaurants, and music concerts. Sister Nena, now a widowed Lola in the West Coast, keeps up with her daughter Mary who served in the Peace Corps in South America, gone skin diving in coral reefs all over, paddled a banca all the way down to the simmering crater of Taal Volcano. An intrepid spirit after my own heart. Couldn’t gloss over my own nostalgia for Ramona’s hojaldres like no other and will never be like any other hojaldre ever. Although Inday and Dodong both have their mother’s secret recipe for the hojaldres they no longer have the time nor the inclination to resurrect the old glory of Ramona’s hojaldres. A pity…

By Jo Magsaysay
Reprinted from Sunstar Cebu August 31, 2006 issue

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Springs Toledos's "Deconstructing Manny"

“He finds gaps,” said Emanuel Steward after Manny Pacquiao stopped Miguel Cotto in the twelfth round. Those three words mirror the words of a far older, far more legendary war tactician: Sun Tzu. “Strike at their gaps,” The Art of War asserted two thousand years ago, “attack when they are lax, don’t let the enemy figure out how to prepare.” The second knockdown of Cotto illustrated this theory. Cotto, a conventional boxer-puncher, was hit in the fourth round by an uppercut from the left side that went inside and underneath his guard. Pacquiao found a gap, capitalized on the momentary carelessness of an onrushing opponent, and spent the rest of the fight exploding every potential solution Cotto thought he had.

“When you are going to attack nearby make it look as if you are going to go a long way,” Sun Tzu said, “when you are going to attack far away, make it look as if you are going just a short distance.” Pacquiao seems to be moving out when he’s coming in and coming in when he’s moving out. He exploits expectations with illusions. He “draws them in” and then “takes them by confusion.” Trainer Freddie Roach, himself a former professional boxer, agrees that Pacquiao is “very hard to read.” Pacquiao continues punching when his opponent expects a pause, his angles are bizarre, and he is often not where he is expected to be after a combination. Due to such unorthodoxies, this southpaw is a master of destroying the timing and rhythm of a conventional fighter. He is similar to Joe Calzaghe in that regard. Mikkel Kessler said that Calzaghe “ruins your boxing.” Indeed, Pacquiao does worse than that.

While a disruptive boxer like Calzaghe spills ink all over your blueprint and laughs about it, Pacquiao ruins your blueprint, but then adds injury to insult by crashing the drafting table over your head.

Pacquiao has athletic gifts that translate well in the ring: disruptive rhythm, timing, and speed, all financed by shocking power that belies his featherweight frame. As if this weren’t enough, his whiskers safely absorbed the shock of Cotto’s left hooks. He was never hurt, which raises eyebrows. Manny, we must remember, was exchanging punches in a division forty pounds north of the one he began in. And he reveled in it, he invited it, even snarling at times and standing disdainfully in the final stanzas to challenge the manhood of the retreating Puerto Rican. Roberto Duran, 58, watched from the crowd. His coal-black eyes remembering the night he dethroned another welterweight who thought he could outgun a smaller man. Duran watched Pacquiao’s black hair flying with the force of his blows, his beard paying unintentional tribute. A smile, once sinister, betrayed his lips.

Despite the glory heaped on him by a celebrity-starved public and an island nation eager for eminence, Pacquiao is not the flawless fighter that Duran was when he handed Sugar Ray Leonard his first defeat. Pacquiao’s humanity can be sensed if not seen in his nervousness as battle commences. It takes him a round or two to find his rhythm and gauge his distance and timing. Before that happens he is prone to reach in, get off balance in range, and will often leave windows open for counters. After that happens, his opponent, any opponent, is in peril.

He can be controlled, particularly by welterweights, but it will take a trainer and a fighter who are willing to give up conventional strategies and think out of the box. Convention is broken down by revolution, and Manny Pacquiao fights like a revolution.

Alas, even the trainer who recognizes the need for a counter-revolutionary strategy is faced with another problem –the trainer in the other corner:

Freddie Roach. The formidable Freddie Roach.

Roach has Parkinson’s disease, which has burdened him with tremors, slurring, and odd pauses during conversations. Its symptoms can be as disconcerting to conventional conversationalists as Manny Pacquiao’s style is to conventional fighters; but his disability also gives him an aura of alien brilliance like Stephen Hawking.

It has had no effect on his knack for strategy.

Roach did well not to tamper with Pacquiao’s unorthodoxy. He streamlined it and added balance, deliberate feints, angles, defense, and a two-fisted attack. Like Floyd Mayweather Jr., Manny Pacquiao has a foundation in fundamentals. Unlike Mayweather, Pacquiao’s lessons occurred later in his career, while Floyd’s were drilled into him as a small child. Also unlike Mayweather who claims to disdain strategy, Manny enters the ring with a master plan or three. Sun Tzu emphasized this: “Victorious warriors win first and then go to war.” Roach spends hours and days and weeks and months in study. He deconstructs his opponent and finds patterns –“habits” as he calls them, to exploit. Then he teaches Manny to “see it as [he] sees it.”

At times, the eyes of Freddie Roach seem to focus on a higher plane inaccessible to anyone else. Perhaps he communes with the ghost of Eddie Futch. Futch was his mentor, and was among the greatest trainers of the 20th century. Futch sparred with Joe Louis and learned his trade in the company of master boxers like Holman Williams. He was the strategist behind the first defeat of Muhammad Ali by Joe Frazier, the second defeat of Ali by Ken Norton, Riddick Bowe’s defeat of the undefeated Evander Holyfield, and Montell Griffin’s disqualification win over the undefeated Roy Jones. Freddie Roach learned at his knee. Manny Pacquiao learned at Freddie’s.

The most popular boxer in the world today was catapulted into stardom after he defeated Oscar De La Hoya and then Ricky Hatton. Serious boxing fans know the truth. De La Hoya and Hatton were simply two candles on a cake already baked between 2003 and 2008 by great Mexicans from the lower weight divisions: Marco Antonio Barrera, Erik Morales, and Juan Manuel Marquez. These are the men who tried him in fire much like Murderers' Row tried Archie Moore in the 1940s and Philadelphia tried Marvelous Marvin Hagler in the 1970s. Pacquiao has evolved bloodily into a complete fighter and then some. He is an experienced, natural athlete with power that exponentially rises with weight. He has a style that is as confusing as a hall of mirrors and as difficult to solve as Chinese math. He is a willing student with an expanding set of skills. Behind him stands a trainer with a direct link to Eddie Futch who was a product of boxing’s golden decade and rubbed shoulders with many gods of war. Manny’s pugilistic pedigree summons the gold of yesterday to overcome the iron of today.

Boxing is a character sport first and a skills sport second. Manny’s character was formed in a background that is ideal for a fighter –a background set in the kind of third world poverty that Americans have not known for seventy years, but a background known to spawn fighters in back alleys amid broken bottles and broken dreams. Manny ran away from home at fourteen to spare his mother one more mouth to feed. He exchanged real poverty for worse poverty –in an act of sacrifice. This fighter has not only suffered, he also understood and embraced self-denial at early adolescence.

The toughest sport in the world is easy for someone like him. Pacquiao has something to fight for as only a poor man can, for self, for family, for country. He has the discipline to do it, and he has the perspective to transcend it. The Sweet Science is meaningful to him; his participation in it is an expression of love and loyalty, of self-actualization. So he approaches battle with joy.

And that isn’t all.

Manny believes that the hand of God himself is on his shoulder. Cynical secularism may scoff at such ancient notions, but irreverence is irrelevant here. Manny believes this –utterly. And it gives him an edge in that he is completely self-possessed and palpably unconcerned with the risks of the ring. He goes not only willingly, but happily. Throughout history, like-minded people have strode confidently into lion’s dens, climbed into kamikaze cockpits, blown themselves up at market places, sang while burning at a stake, and volunteered to die first at Nazi death camps to spare strangers. Pacquiao’s religiosity is that kind of powerful. It is a major reason why he smiles and waves on his way to battle dragons.

Emanuel Steward’s assertion that the thirty-year-old welterweight champion, now 50-3-2, belongs “up there” with Ali and Robinson was half-wrong. When Robinson was thirty, he was defeated once in 131 bouts and went on to finish his career with the scalps of eighteen world champions hanging from his belt. Manny isn’t near that. He is a typhoon blowing over structures less sturdy than those built in the golden era of boxing. But remember, he isn’t finished yet.

Like the legends before him, Manny Pacquiao sees himself as a man of destiny… a patriot fighting for a flag, a Christian laughing at lions… Such men are rarely taken down by anything except time and hubris. They are larger than their foes even when they are not.

Such men are larger than themselves. 

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My L.V. Beethoven Stamps from Arabia

These are the LV Beethoven stamps from Arabia numbering 58. I have all the stamps except Fujeira 1972 Michel block 132, Fujeira 1971 MK 681 -Planche and Ras Al Khaima 1971 Michel BF 114.

Monday, October 26, 2009

The Oldest Beethoven Stamp

The oldest Beethoven stamp in my collection is a local stamp from Altona, Germany issued in 1889. Its initial value on issue was 20 pfennic (penny). Present value is around US$ 30.

Altona is the westernmost urban borough of the German city state of Hamburg, on the right bank of the Elbe river. From 1640 to 1864 Altona was under the administration of the Danish monarchy. Altona was an independent city until 1937. In 2006 the population was 243,972.

It was founded in 1535 as a village of fishermen. In 1664 it received city rights from Danish King Frederik III. Until 1864 Altona was one of the Danish monarchy's most important harbour towns. The railroad from Altona to Kiel, the Christian VIII Baltic Sea Rail Line, was opened in 1844.

Because of the severe restrictions on the number of Jews allowed to live in Hamburg , a major Jewish community developed in Altona. Members did business both in Hamburg and in Altona itself. All that remains is the Jewish cemetery, but in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries it was a major center of Jewish life and scholarship.

During the Weimar era following World War I, the city of Altona was disturbed by major worker strikes and street disorders. Inflation in Germany was a major problem. In 1923 Max Brauer the mayor of Altona, directed that city personnel be paid in part with gas meter tokens, as these coins were did not lose value with inflation. The most notable event at this time is the bloody Sunday of Altona on July 7, 1932 when several persons were shot by the police force during a demonstration of Nazi groups. After police raids and a special court, on August 1, 1933 among others Bruno Tesch was found guilty and beheaded. The convictions of Tesch and the other men who were executed were reversed by the Federal Republic of Germany in the 1990s.

The Greater Hamburg Act removed Altona from the Free State of Prussia in 1937 and merged it (and several surrounding cities) with the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg in 1938.

On 1 February 2007 the Ortsämter (Precincts) in Hamburg were dissolved. In Altona were the precincts Blankenese, Lurup and Osdorf with local offices. On 1 March 2008 the Schanzenviertel neighborhood, which had spanned across parts of the boroughs of Altona, Eimsbüttel and Hamburg-Mitte, became the Sternschanze quarter, the entirely of which is now in the Altona borough.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Conquering Taal Volcano

Taal Volcano is a complex volcano on the island of Luzon in the Philippines. It is situated between the towns of Talisay and San Nicolas in Batangas. It consists of an island in Lake Taal, which is situated within a caldera formed by an earlier, very powerful eruption. It is located about 50 km (31 Miles) from the capital, Manila. It is one of the active volcanos in the Philippines, all part of the Pacific ring of fire.

To get to the Taal Volcano Lake, one has a 20 minute banca ride from Talisay, Batangas to the shores of Taal Volcano. One may the opt to walk or run the trail or ride a horse for around 20 minutes to reach the crater. The view around the crater is breath taking. The serenity is soul-quenching. Eccentrically located near the middle of the lake, is a lonely islet, small enough to host 5-10 people. Whats exotic living organisms lurk in this terrain? This is truly a unique geographical wonder- an islet in a lake in a volcano in a lake in an island! Bravehearts my opt to go down the lake but I think this is prohibited due to the recent increased seismic activity in the area. The trail is as diverse as it gets- sand, rainwater, mud, volcanic rock, grass, gravel- and the odor ranges from horse manuric, muddy to floral. I think this is one of the most challenging off road courses in the Philippines- a trail runner's dream or nightmare. Hope that North Face will sponsor a train run here- will definitely join if it ever happens.

The volcano has erupted violently several times, causing loss of life in the populated areas surrounding the lake, the current death toll standing at around 5,0006,000. Because of its proximity to populated areas and eruptive history, the volcano has been designated a Decade Volcano worthy of close study to prevent future natural disasters. It was thought to be named as "a volcano inside a volcano" because many believed that the lake that circles the volcano was once a crater or mouth of a volcano.

The Decade Volcanoes refer to the 16 volcanoes identified by the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior (IAVCEI) as being worthy of particular study in light of their history of large, destructive eruptions and proximity to populated areas. The Decade Volcanoes project encourages studies and public-awareness activities at these volcanoes, with the aim of achieving a better understanding of the volcanoes and the dangers they present, and thus being able to reduce the severity of natural disasters. They are named Decade Volcanoes because the project was initiated as part of the United Nations-sponsored International Decade for Natural Disaster Reduction.

The following volcanoes were selected as the 16 current Decade Volcanoes:

* Avachinsky-Koryaksky, Kamchatka, Russia
* Colima, Jalisco and Colima, Mexico
* Mount Etna, Sicily, Italy
* Galeras, Nariño, Colombia
* Mauna Loa, Hawaii, USA
* Mount Merapi, Central Java, Indonesia
* Mount Nyiragongo, Democratic Republic of Congo
* Mount Rainier, Washington, USA
* Sakurajima, Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan
* Santamaria/Santiaguito, Guatemala
* Santorini, Cyclades, Greece
* Taal Volcano, Luzon, Philippines
* Teide, Canary Islands, Spain
* Ulawun, New Britain, Papua New Guinea
* Mount Unzen, Nagasaki Prefecture, Japan
* Vesuvius, Naples, Italy

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Cebuano Artists Painting Collection- Jose "Kimsoy" Yap Jr.

Jose "Kimsoy" Yap Jr. was born on March 7, 1944 in Bindoy, Negros Oriental, Philippines. Graduated from the Cebu Institute of Technology with a degree in Bachelor of Science in Architecture, he then continued and studied painting at the National Academy of Design School of Fine Arts in New York. He also currently teaches at the University of San Carlos and Cebu Academy of Arts.

Having studied at the National Academy of Design School of Fine Arts in New York, Kimsoy's painting style depicts traces of western influence, yet an intrinsic Filipino character remains in his art pieces. What is striking in most of his works is the conscious use of line and space; making the most of each minute stroke, for example, to bring about the best effect with the color, size and texture of the paper considered. The phrase "less is more" could be applied to some of his works lending a deeper drama to each of his paintings.

Shown are some of his works: "Bliss"- a sketch of Vincent and Yanna, my 2 children, Match maker and Lost Childhood.

Some of his awards include:
1970 - 3rd Prize- South East Asian Art Competition (Singapore)
2003 - 2nd Prize, On-the Spot Painting Competition, Sibonga,
2004 - 2nd Prize Painting Competition , Liloan, Cebu
1973-1987 - Numerous Awards from National Academy of Design School of Fine Arts
1974 - James Suydam Bronze Medal 1976-Louis La Beaume Prize
1978 - Mary Hinman Carter Prize 1979- Alice G. Melrose Prize
1981 - Julius Halgarten Prize 1982- Elliot Silver Medal for Drawing
1987 - Leon Neckhamen Prize Member Organizations: Kolor Sugbo

Monday, October 12, 2009

My L.V. Beethoven Stamps from the Americas

These are the Beethoven stamps from the Americas that are in my collection. Included are stamps from Suriname (8), Dominica (10), Grenada (9), Paraguay (1), Mexico (3), Guyana (3) , Cuba (1), Grenadines (1), Grenada (1), Columbia (1) and Uruguay (1)- a total of 39 stamps. Lacking in my Americas collection are stamps from El Salvador (1), Grenadines 1996 (1), and Chile (1) - a total of 3 stamps. The North American countries like the United States and Canada never honored Beethoven with a stamp.