Cebu is in for a treat this coming October 15 and 16 when The Holistic Coalition of the Willing (HoliCOW PH) and MaGNA CMGN Solutions Inc. will host the acclaimed designer trio TATSULOK and the coalition’s first popup since lockdown.
The TATSULOK sa Cebu: A Lifestyle Popup will showcase the designs of Balay Ni Atong by Al Valenciano, Filip+Inna by Lenora Luisa Cabili and Natalia Lagdameo. Tatsulok brings to Cebu their work with communities in Mindanao, Kalinga and Ilocos in light homeware, and accessories for everyday chic Filipiniana.
Visitors of the popup will have the opportunity to acquire the beautiful creations of the designers who work closely with their partner communities, developing unique products that reflect the culture of these communities.
HoliCOW PH, in partnership with MaGNA, is a socio-creative enterprise that works with communities all over the region to conceptualize and create products that carry the stories and culture of Filipinos for the modern home.
The coalition, which was founded by furniture designers Debbie Palao and Christina “Ina” Gaston, aims to create sustainable, authentic and identity-validating designs. It works with partner communities to develop, produce, and market sustainable, fair trade products, tapping the community skills and resources and supplement their livelihood.
“We advocate Filipino folklore that’s why we research about Maria Cacao, for example,” said Ms. Palao.
MaGNA an interior/exterior finishing and fit out specialist that collaborates with local designers and artists to showcase our local culture through decor and art. MaGNA’s president, Ms Marylou Ngo-Ang, is also one of the stockholders of HoliCOW PH.
The exhibit will also feature products of HoliCOW’s designers. It will be held at the 2nd floor of MaGNA showroom in Streetscape Mall, Banilad, Cebu City.
“A lot of it is based on our advocacy which is sustainability, authenticity and identity,” said Kae Batiquin of HoliCOW.
Ms. Palao further explained that the designers use sustainably sourced materials. “We upcycle. We recycle.”
The Balay ni Atong will feature the intricately woven, rich textiles of Ilocos called abel. Abel is an Ilocano word that refers to the traditional woven product of Ilocos region.
Valenciano’s designs include blankets, duvet covers, pillowcases and soft furnishings that transforms the northern weaving traditions into designs using modern, contemporary palettes and patterns. He has gained recognition for his innovations in preserving traditions like sustainable silkworm culture to produce very fine, very beautiful silk fiber.
Valenciano also served as adviser to HoliCOW PH and its partner Argao Habloneras’ for various projects that aim to revitalize and document Cebu’s own unique weaving traditions. He is an advocate for the documentation and archiving of Filipino traditional arts and crafts.
Filip+Inna specializes in RTW pieces in full or partial embroidery, hand-sewn from her partner tribes in Lake Sebu, T’boli and Mangyan.
Filip+Inna’s founder and designer Len Cabili who hails from Iligan is inspired by traditions in the diverse Filipino culture, creating contemporary designs ranging from everyday smart casual to formal wear.
Ms. Cabili, who has ties to Liloan, Cebu, supports the Filipino Soft Power movement. Soft power refers to the use of cultural or economic influence to promote economic growth.
She believes that making the Filipiniana central to the decisions of everyday consumers starts with embracing the soft power concept. She spearheaded the Ternocon movement, a fashion presentation and show that revolves around the terno, participated by world-renowned Filipino designers.
Meanwhile, designer Natalia Lagdameo creates beautiful pieces from assorted metalwork including decadent brass and gold inspired by designs from antique and heirloom Filipino jewelry.
Inspired by designs from antique and heirloom Filipino jewelry, Ms. Lagdameo embellished her creation ranges with brass and gold. She also uses as embellishments precious to semi-precious stones as well as smooth river stones picked from the shores of the upper Kalinga region where she connects with her tribal community.
Her signature creation is the Giniling bangles. These are thin gold-brass bangles layered on the forearm, each one representing a significant date in a woman’s life.
NLagdameo’s work has appeared in runways all over the world. She also does meticulous restoration of genuine antiques.
The co-founders of HoliCOW are both award winners. Ms. Palao is a previous winner of the Good Design Award Japan while Ms. Gaston is the winner of the Hong Kong Design Award and the ASEAN Selections Award in Thailand. HoliCOW’s other directors of note come from intersectoral industries, lending their experience to the Coalition’s various activities: Ms Marlinda Angbetic-Tan is a figurehead in Cebuano literature and arts, and Mr. Allen Tan heads the Arts Council of Cebu, and has recently successfully concluded the Tubô art fair last month.
HoliCOW also won the Good Design Award Philippines’ first Systems Design Award in 2019. It has been instrumental in contributing to the bid of Cebu to be declared as a UNESCO Creative City of Design.
HoliCOW partners up with designers and manufacturers to explore more sustainable production practices and develop products from excess materials that usually get discarded.
The TATSULOK sa Cebu: A Lifestyle Popup will open at 10 a.m. and close at 6 p.m.
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