190 Artists Gallery

190 Artists Gallery

“An Artist cannot fail. It is a success just to be one.” ~Charles Horton Cooley~

I just have this immeasurable admiration for people who invest in the Arts and culture. And this is where 190 Artists Gallery (formerly Artists Haven) true passion and genius lies.

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As I spotted this place, my imagination immediately came back from how it all began and how they were able to throw in together and generate such vast collection on top of a very well thought of and awe-inspiring interiors. Not to forget mentioning the foolproof blending of colors that only a true artist can achieve. Plus the great line-up of food to top it all.

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I have been dreaming too big to witness up-close places that’s synonymous to Arts, as this niche grows dynamically each day. I might not be not fortunate enough as most of them are located in other countries, and I do not have that capacity yet. However, during discoveries like this, and 190 Artists Gallery’s location is doable for me, It didn’t take me a week to decide and visit.

Their Social Media Account Manager is so accommodating to guide me upon my inquiry.

And when I get there, everything spelled happy.

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For all the Art Enthusiasts out there, you would want to visit this place and truly enjoy every minute of it. Let alone those Instagrammable photos amuse your viewers and yourself as well as it did to me.

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They have been giving workshops too. I intend to go back and hopefully there will be an ongoing activity by then. There’s more to see on the second floor. And try the other special treats from their menu list.  =)

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At home, I’ve always dreamt that my bathroom is the prettiest spot in the house. And so this one inspired me big time.

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That feeling of “I can’t get enough” applies, I’ll just let my photos speak for themselves. =)

I learned that most of them are by renowned visual artist and a master printmaker – Fil Dela Cruz among other well-known artists.

I wondered why I discovered them just now. The Gallery have been there for more than 30 years now. Probably during the 80s, these books are proofs.

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It just didn’t stimulate all of my senses, I felt my soul is so delighted too. =)

190 Artists Gallery is located at:

190 Aguirre Ave., BF Homes, Parañaque, Metro Manila. Should you wish to contact them and request for a reservation, here’s their number: 02-825 8810. They are on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/190ArtistsGallery/





Arte Mondo…

“Creativity is contagious, pass it on.” ~Albert Einstein~

As part of of a personal project I’m working on. Attending fairs and exhibits helped me a lot to broaden my horizon and discover more possibilities that helps me with my growth.

Arte Mondo was part of a recent fair that I visited. Their booth showcased some of the original designs of several designers located inside the compound of Henry hotel in Pasay City, Manila.


Their booth’s attendants were vigilant enough to invite us to check out their shops at F.B. Harrison St., Pasay City.

My frog prince..=p

I am very willing to see it and who else can I tag along here, but Jen. She has her own thing lately and busy as a bee, she just got promoted and spends more time at work. Though, it’s nice to see her flourishing, the “late bloomer” that she is. Long way to go, but with each progress, I’ve always knew, she will be there. While I’m happy that she can still allot time to accompany me wherever our feet leads us.

It was also good to know that a year ago, when I missed an event by Travelling Trunk, and this time, I’ll make sure I won’t miss it.

As you see, there’s always some level of excitement each time I set a date to check out works of fellow artisans. They literally inspire my soul. They give me hope and aspire bigger dreams. I never wanted to lose that kind of hope. Ever. That someday, I will be a major part of some cool projects that will be witnessed by many. Especially those who are close to my heart. Like a full circle. A kind of journey to something new. A creative process.

Please take a look.

Reminded me to light my garden..
I can’t wait to wander..
Don’t forget to look up, there’s more..
Kitchen stuff..
A wall is full of beautiful plates.
They have one of my favorite scents – verbena..
I took a photo of my favorite.. that insert of floral..
Little mason jars..

I thought I had enough when the attendant directed us to go up as there are more displays on the second floor..

I honestly felt here a “deja vu”..
This set-up will welcome you upon reaching the second floor.
I have qualms to sit and try the cushions when the attendant asked me to try. So I did, and I had my photo here..
This is the door to the terrace…
On the left side are framed birds of different species..
And on the other room is a Trompe l’oeil..

The second house is equally amazing…

An antique stand holds the poster reflecting the names of the designers..
Nothing but Art..
This one is a collection of tea cups, jars and glasses.
These are display items in different shapes and sizes. Materials used are old pages of books..
There’s a little girl in the glass..
Behind the door is an art depicting inca symbols..

Our last stop is:

On a bamboo easel..
My grandmother has a cabinet like this..
Indirect lighting definitely adds drama to any area..
The soaps are wrapped in floral papers and were neatly arranged in such a way that it looked delicious to me..=)

The hard part is to decide when to go back again. Jotting it down in my calendar, since I spotted items as Christmas gifts to friends and loved-ones. =)

MAARTE Fair 2016…

Maarte Fair 2016

“I was created to create.”

Maarte Fair kicked-off 3 years ago and much as I want to see it then, time didn’t permit me.

Since 2013…

So come 2016, I looked forward to it and kept an eye as to when it’ll be held and of course where.

Photo source: http://www.manilashopper.com/2016/08/maarte-fair-at-8-rockwell-august-2016.html

Upon seeing the event’s title, I remember our own exhibit before I graduated from college. It says: “Artenikulasa”. It featured our actual execution of what was in our thesis. It was held at Shangri-la mall, in Mandaluyong City.

OMG! 1993! ahaha

Being “maarte” might insinuate a not so positive thought to many, however, with me, at times I am being associated with everything that is “maarte”, I didn’t mind and even took it as a compliment.

Ground floor of Rockwell 8..
Best booth awardee..
Everything is nice and pretty…

I’d rather be known as “maarte” than be bland, not necessarily being up to date with all the current trends, just making sure there is artistry, be it with the way I dress, the way I fix my sanctuary, even with my cooking and how I blog or write as well.




Due to a really very busy schedule, and hunting for friends who would take their time out just to accompany me, even if at times it’s not their cup of tea, I found my way to see the fair on a Sunday. It’s the last day of the event. For the last three years, it’s been held every last weekend of August, from Friday to Sunday.

I had this fear of not being able to make it again this time, for one, I got sick last week, the whole of Saturday was pre-planned to celebrate my sister-in-law’s birthday and I made sure that Sunday would be free. And I had to mention being thankful to my ever supportive buddy – Jen, she is not just my travel and foodie buddy but also my art buddy as well. I am good to attend it alone, It’s just that it would be great to share with her this experience and get her views too.


Cheese platter…






Anthill from Cebu was there..=)

So this it, finally I get to see the fair. I could not express how happy and excited I was to make it and see myself witnessing artisans from all over the country showcasing the best of their crafts. It was an assembly of individuals with a common ground. Their love for art.

An artist’s life has two sides like a coin, the other is the realization that you are one and the other side is living the realization. They are the other side. While I, I think I’m on my way.

The artist in all of us is seen in all our surroundings. It is there each time we speak, it is traced in our gaze, it is evident in our every actions, with the way we express ourselves and it is felt in our hearts. You would instantly notice it upon meeting another.




The fair was a gamut of everything that is nice and pretty and tedious. I say tedious because it took someone’s time and effort and laborious days and nights to finish a masterpiece. Signed with uniqueness.






Time is gold…

And once it is finished, it spelled happiness in every artisan.

You will also wonder as to what inspired them to create one when passion is calling their names out loud. To create a piece, there is always an inspiration behind, and believe me, each story is uniquely interesting.




Buslo.. and intricately embellished clutches..

Creating a piece for me is like two souls intertwined, the one who created it and the one who was why it was created. That piece itself is like a bond that will pull them together for as long as the memory can recall.

Every artist can evolve… everyone can…

These are the things that inspires me as well, so I am looking up again next year to witness all things beautiful reborn. Who knows, I might see myself as one of them too.

What’s with COASTERS?

What’s with Coasters? 

“Realize deeply that the present moment is all you ever have.” ~Eckhart Tolle~

At a time when I see tables in veneer or solid wood everywhere. Our house then, all tables of which are in glass tops instead. It was specifically chosen by my father.

He was also very particular that it must be clean and preferably shining all the time. We always have a supply of Pledge. He wants to make sure that they are clean, dust-free and glossy.

It is also his rule that guests if offered a drink must be provided with coasters. We have all kinds. Glass, wood, cork board, laminated sheets, etc.

My father was the most influential person in all of my life. Ironically, we used to argue most of the time. I see myself in my son, as we also quarrel and argue a lot over petty things more than the more important things that matters which I guess is worthier.

This training from my dad is where my fond of collecting coasters began.

While I was still young and adventurous and fearless. I would dare asking from restaurants if I can bring home one of their coasters as souvenirs.

I remember that Italianni’s even offered something to us since our order took more than the usual waiting time before they were served. The Manager was very apologetic and asked if we want something else from their menu for free, but we declined since we appreciated their humility enough that we let it pass when others might take advantage and grab the offer.

As the Manager was about to leave our table, I saw an opportunity. I called her back with the sweetest smile that I could give her, I requested from her if I can just have one of their coasters as a souvenir. =) And without batting an eyelash, she gladly offered me one. I was so happy then.

I got this. I intentionally requested for this since I am also collecting Coke souvenirs..

During my travels, I make sure I bought coasters if I find one. I got a set from a Designer turned full-time housewife in Tacloban but since her artistic side is something she can’t sacrifice on top of being a wife. She put up a business. A souvenir shop where all items came from her numerous travels too, and that is where I got those shabby chic coasters which I instantly eyed from her collection.

Shabby chic..

One Christmas, I even bought dozens of it from Starbucks and gave them as Christmas gifts to my office mates.

Then I wished for a wooden type with a peacock engraved on it, however, the price of it is shocking. One weekend, my foodie travel buddy surprised me with a “no occasion” gift and its a coaster! Wooden and engraved with a peacock! This soul mastered the art of pleasing me all the time. I was so grateful.


I find them very stylish as well.

Loved this!
This one I often use everyday because of its’ depth..

My house is not the Zen type “less is more” type of dwelling. It now looked like a gypsy’s abode with all the trinkets and knick knacks and decorative pieces, souvenirs from my travels scattered all around. Though I make sure they’re not an eyesore yet as my mom will really reprimand me about it. As when you get to see our home, they’re just full of colors. All of it, vivid. I am bored with white or anything monotonous. I want happy colors and so is my house.

Some from Starbucks and personalized ones from a Flea market I’ve been to years ago.

Passion comes close with alterations at times. I saw one of the most unique coasters. It has a very simple design as oppose to my usual preferences like floral, shabby, full of colors and the like. And they are very expensive too. I immediately bought them before I come back to my senses. For a change I got stripes in black and white. Very “Kate Spade” kind of design. And literally those coasters are from Kate Spade.

Gave in to this..

Of course, I’ve got a set that’s Shabby chic too, it came with a case.

Total of 6..
This one came from my son as a gift..
Very simple..
Souvenir from my son’s prom..
This one is made of ceramic, it used to be gilded on the edges, they were erased by time.. #wearandtear
From Bubba gump..=)
From Peperoni Pizzeria

I plan to make my own soon, a quilted one. A lot I’ve seen which instantly inspired me. =)

Courtesy of: https://www.pinterest.com/varbizu/beezycrafts/
Courtesy of: criss cross http://www.sleepingbearcrafts.com
Courtesy of: gedcarpizo.com

Like some who collects like the sky is the limit. I am the other way around. Its not like “I can’t get enough” thing. There’s a moment when it felt like “Okay this is enough”. And I’m happy about it. Besides it is not just coasters that I collect.

I have like hundreds of coasters at home.

Getting strained from life’s realities, collecting some of the stuff I am fascinated about gives me an uplifting feeling especially upon seeing them surrounding me. In my bedroom, in our living room, dining room even in our bathroom. It uplifts me from within. It is very important that I follow what my heart and soul is dictating me. Otherwise, I will be very bored.

As Kurt Vonnegut said: “Enjoy the little things in life because one day you`ll look back and realize they were the big things.”

Philippine Literary Festival 2015

Philippine Literary Fair 2015

“I don’t want to stay in the bad place where no one believes in silver linings or love or happy endings.” ~Matthew Quick~

This has stayed in my memory after I watched “Silver linings playbook” twice after my soul buddy convinced me that this is a good movie. I had to see it because if she’s the one who said it’s a good movie. Expect it to be.

This quote somehow stayed with me. It was so natural. And it made me feel that I am not the only person in this world who believes in “happy endings” or if I may use the term: “Fairy tale”

So when I learned about the Philippine Literary Festival for this year and a familiar name flashes on that billboard in EDSA as I was trying to make it out. I looked twice and confirmed that it is the author of Silver Linings who will guest the event along with another, Meg Wolitzer.

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Source: http://www.aktivshow.com/the-philippine-literary-festival-2015/

Last year, I missed Amy Tan, I intended to go as well though due to some pre-planned activities, I missed it. I have a book of Ms. Tan too. The title of which at first I had a hard time remembering because it sounds weird if you say it fast like how my friends said it when they recommended that “Its’ a must read” book and a good film to watch too. “The Joy luck club”. You know when they say it fast – choylaklab is how it sounds to me. Sounded funny right? Until I found it from an old cafe in the Visayas (of all places huh), watched it and loved it.

It actually became my habit to choose books to read that were translated into films. I have collected those by John Grisham, Sydney Sheldon and Robert Ludlum which became films after a century. I also have some of Nicolas Sparks, Little Women from Louisa May Alcott, the 1994 adaptation which starred Winona Ryder, it was adapted thrice before this one: 1933, 1949 and 1978. I was barely 6 years old. Twilight Saga was my recent favorite. I read all four sequels. And I am patiently waiting for another from Sophie Kinsella’s Shopaholic Series, I have the first from fifth series and about to acquire the Mini and Shopaholic to the Stars.

This time, it’s “Silver linings Playbook”. Much as I loved the artists who portrayed the characters, I have to mention Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence (whom my soul buddy and I loved so much – we call her J.Law!) and Robert De Niro. No hesitancy of doubting the plot of its’ story (at that time I haven’t heard of Matthew Quick yet), I watched it right away.

source: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1045658/

If I must say, I think I was able to relate with this movie, because to be transparent, I have been sometimes crazy in my entire life. To define “crazy”, I have to leave it all to you guys. =)

Well, just so to give my two cents worth on this. “Crazy” for me is those times I refused to see the truth and believed in the wrong version of some people’s truth. Until it killed me. So it happened a lot of times and I guess my craziness will remain much as my equally-crazy friends will remind me that my craziness is way beyond its’ usual limit. Ahaha!

Note: I just get crazy with Mr. Wrong(s). Oh well. I guess, finding Mr. Right, I had to be Ms. Right first and foremost, right?! =)

So enough of this craziness, I instantly asked my ever faithful foodie travel buddy to register for the two of us since Raffles hotel is just a stone’s throw away from her office.

Voila! She got two passes right away with free bookmarks, ID with lanyard, and we’re just waiting for some days to become a”Sunday”. This is the day (it’s a 3 day event) and this is the day where Matthew Quick will do his talk real quick. =)

Some works of Art!
I so agree!
Several activities were happening in 3 ballrooms!

Literally, the talk was like less than an hour. Really quick. They encouraged questions from the audience, and I was so relaxed while I have tons of questions in mind, and while listening to this smart girl who asked Matthew about depression, they announced that it’s the last question from the audience.

Anyway, one of my questions is how did his wife took it since they both decided not to have a child. He was a very transparent guy. He was so honest, he’s like talking to his friends, very humble, well-informed and full of wisdom. I could not forget when he said: “I can’t be a good writer while being a bad father.” Something that sounds like it, I was not able to take it verbatim. Made sense right?! And it made me admired him more. I instantly thought of unplanned pregnancies. Bringing into this world, human beings when they can’t be taken cared of. Matthew is a very cautious man. He was also concern to his effect to humanity but low-profile enough that he never expected his book to be at “The Oscars!”

He was very spontaneous..
I wish I recorded his talk..
He gleefully said: “I need water!” =)
He was requested to read a few lines from one of his books… And he did it thoughtfully…

It made me admire his audience too. Those who raised some questions, were very intellectual and they speak the English language fluently. Throw relevant questions and none throw ones for the heck of asking. It was a good audience.

Selfie! =) or Groupie! whatever! =)
From an enthusiast’s view..=)

I didn’t fall in line to have my book signed by him. Getting to see him pointblank, that
close enough is already enough for me. I was just happy watching them, I mean those with books to be signed by him. We even tried to have a selfie with him and with a crowd as big as it, I doubt if all were captured. =) I also tried convincing my bff-Jen to have one signed as part of her collection, as she got 2 books personally signed by the authors. Though she wants it to be me and I do not want to fall in line, besides I already have the book, ahaha.

His books..
The only one I saw and read from his works. I’ll check the others soon, the with the peacock on the title. =)
They also put up a Coffee station and pastries from Cafe Macaron.

So instead of bumping heads over it, we opted to have some pastries and coffee from
Cafe Macaron. It is just a floor away from the ballroom where I personally saw Matthew Quick. =)

While enjoying our carbos and sweets, we’re already looking forward to next year’s guests. Who knows? It might be one of our favorites again.