New York, 6 June 2018 – Textile arts and images of the six tribal communities, weavers, and peoples of Mindanao were the focus of an exhibit entitled “ The Hinabi Project: Weaving Peace and Dreams Textile Arts of Mindanao” that opened last 6 June 2018 to kick off the Philippine Consulate General’s celebration of the 120th Anniversary of Philippine Independence.
Four 9-foot textile panels, intricately and precisely woven by master weavers and artists from the Mandaya, Bagobo, Yakan, Maranao, Maguindanao and Tausug communities, were the centerpieces of the show. According to The Hinabi Project (THP) Co-Founder Mr. Anthony Legarda, who did the National Commission for Culture and Arts-sponsored research in Mindanao, the motifs and patterns are centuries-old and showcase the best of Southern Philippine indigenous textile arts. He added that the designs and symbols used for the exhibit were carefully selected for their royal significance.
The exhibit launching also served as the Independence Day Diplomatic Reception hosted by Deputy Consul General Kerwin Orville Tate. The event was attended by Ambassador Claro Cristobal, who flew to New York to represent the Secretary of the Foreign Affairs at the Philippine Independence Day celebrations. Guests included the diplomatic corps, partners in the business sector, members of the academe and the media.
The Iskwelahang Pilipino Dance and Rondalla Group, composed of 14 young Filipinos and Filipino-Americans from Boston, performed Mindanao traditional dances and rendered Filipino songs through their rondalla, to the delight of the guests.
The following day, Co-Founder Dr. Michael Gonzales gave a Lecture on The Hinabi Project, centering on THP’s mission to preserve and promote artisanal weaving arts of indigenous peoples of the Philippines. He emphasized the goal of the project, which is not merely to showcase the textile artistry but underscore the need for integrated solutions that will assist the diversity of indigenous cultural communities and the continuity of their weaving traditions.
The Exhibit will run until 30 June 2018 at the Lobby Gallery of the Philippine Center, 556 Fifth Avenue, New York, New York.