Saturday, June 03, 2006

Manila: National Artist Pablo Antonio’s work to be demolished

What are people doing to Manila's heritage? It seems the uglification of Manila is moving forward at such an alarming rate. The sad part is our utter disregard for the works of people we call National Artists. Why do we give out the award in the first place if we don't even care whether their works are preserved for future generations of Filipinos to appreciate?

I got this from Richard Tuason Bautista of the Heritage Conservation Society, "This morning (3 June 2006) during our taping and inspection of the ongoing demolition of the Avenue Theater and Hotel, we learned from the EVJ Demolition Team, with representation of their general manager Mr. Esteban Toting, that the Galaxy Theatre is next to face the demolition crew.

"Galaxy theatre is a work of National Artist for Architecture Pablo Antonio. It may not be too late to save this one. But how to save it, an uproar from the public is needed."

We should not sit down and simply watch while what's left of the Pearl of the Orient and its capital city, goes down one by one! To the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), National Historical Institute (NHI) and the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP), it's about time you guys take a stand and protect the works of our National Artists! And to all of us ordinary citizens, let's write Mayor Atienza and tell him to stop giving out demolition permits for Manila's architectural heritage!

In fact, the NCCA lists the Galaxy Theater as one of Antonio's major works! Again, for those who would like to save this heritage structure, you can call or fax a complaint to Mayor Lito Atienza at 5276063 or 5274991 or send an e-mail at

Check out Ellen Tordesillas' blog for more comments about Atienza's latest rampage.

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