Freeway's National Artist Collectors Series No. 6 Features Vicente Manansala

A few months ago, I blogged about Freeway's National Artist Collectors Series No. 5 featuring F. Sionil Jose, National Artist for Literature. You can read that entry here. Freeway's designs are wearable on and off the ramp and I fell in love the Sionil collection so much, I ended up buying three pieces of clothing because it was hard to choose just one.

In time for this last quarter of 2011, Freeway launched its sixth installment of the National Artist Collectors' Series which honors Vicente Manansala, National Artist for Visual Arts. Now, I'm having the same dilemma with this collection because there are so many beautiful pieces that, I'm sure, many women would also like to own.

The launching included a fashion show and special tribute to the man of the hour. This special celebration of the life and great works of the legendary Manansala was held at The Row, Glorietta 5 yesterday. The event was well-attended by fashion and art enthusiasts, members of the quad media, and family and friends of Manansala.

Tim Yap and Divine Lee, two vibrant celebrities and trendsetters, hosted the event wearing Manansala outfits and added fun and candor to the evening. To share interesting stories and life experiences about Manansala were special guests Maritess Mendoza-Pineda, President of Friends of Manansala Foundation, Cedie Lopez-Vargas of the The Lopez Museum, and Ronna Manansala, granddaughter of  the national artist.

When the models started coming out garbed with the Manansala pieces, we saw the original artworks simultaneously flashed on the LED screen onstage and it's amazing how the masterpieces that used to be seen in frames and canvasses were transferred to various items suited to today's modern times. The beautiful 22 piece collection possesses all the vibrant colors of a Manansala painting which many of us are familiar with. The models wore Muniz Shoes designed by Carmina Villaroel. Make up was done by Margo Sarmiento, and hair by Nina Escano, Charlene Manibo, and Anna Liza Sulthan. View more pieces from the Manasala collection in Freeway Online's Facebook photo album.

Artists from the Kunst Pilipino Group also did some live sketching before the event. The talented roster of artists include noted painters in their own right: Aris Bagtas, Sam Bulaga, Allen Casacop, Emer Casacop, Jo Florendo, Lourdes Inosanto, Lawton Ladao, Raquel Molata, Bill Perez, and Mischa Semana.

As a backgrounder, Freeways blazed a trail in 2009 by reintroducing the Philippine Arts and Culture to the younger generation with its Freeway loves Art: National Artist Collectors’ Series which made fashionalism more hip and relevant. The creative blending of fashion and art gave birth to the first five well-loved series that featured National Artists Nick Joaquin (Literature), Ang KiuKok (Visual Arts), Jose Garcia Villa (Literature), Ramon Valera (Fashion Design) and the first living NA in the series, F. Sionil Jose (Literature).

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