ManilART 2012



Last October 2nd, I attended the gala night of ManilART. I was one of the guests of honour and I was also asked to sort of host the short program. So much great contemporary art here! Go. It’s on until October 6th at SMX.

Unfortunately because of my duties, I wasn’t able to take photos myself. I brought my Olympus though. Most of these shots were taken by ManilART’s Patrick Laroco. He shot during the event so all my photos are of me, me, me. Haha. Sorry about that. But let me tell the story…


Romana Go ManilART Event Director, Mellie Ablaza, artist Romulo Galicano, beauty queen Evangeline Pascual, gallery owner Amy W. Loste and Rep. Sonny Angara.


With my good friend, artist Danny Rayos del Sol. He was the one who invited me to ManilART. He also donated this beautiful hand-carved ostrich egg in UNICEF’s Auction for Action. You have til Oct 7th to bid on the pieces here.


So I show up in Carlo Calma’s booth and look at his work. Carlo joked, “You were my inspiration when I did this.” Haha! So we posed like the characters in his work. I love Carlo’s pieces. And he pledged to donate to UNICEF next year. Yay!


With longtime supporter of UNICEF, artist Manuel Baldemor.


Migs Villanueva has these beautiful paintings of children.


They reminded me so much of my three daughters. Putting this on my wishlist!


With gallery owner and organizer Amy W. Loste of Galery Nine,  Andy Estella, Boston Gallery’s Dr Cuanang and my former colleagues in ABS-CBN Tintin and Julius Babao.


Romulo Galicano and his latest masterpiece. The exact title escapes me (I was not taking notes – balancing a microphone, camera and bag). Mr Galicano tells me this is about the “National Artist fiasco”. The selling price is P15 million!


We met the artist Jayson Cortez. He is young and new and works in the same genre as the popular contemporary artists – a bit of photorealism and surrealism. With us in the photo are Rep. Sonny Angara and gallery owner Joel Mendez.


This is Jayson Cortez’ work. Imagine how huge this is.


Hoping Patrick Laroco can send me names of the works and artists.






Works of National Artist Abudulmari Imao


Daniel De La Cruz, who also donated a beautiful piece in UNICEF’s Auction for Action. Check it out here.


Joel, Sonny, Amy, art collector Randy Go and art critic Ruben Canete. We are standing in front of an enormous painting from 2001 by celebrated artist Ronald Ventura. It is owned by Joel who says it is priceless. He may be willing to let go of it for 1 million US dollars. Any takers?


With singer Kuh Ledesma who also exhibited some of her paintings.


With Galleria Duemila’s Silvana Diaz and daughter.


What I wore. Totally chamba. I was starting to feel sick again that afternoon – the sneezy kind. I didn’t have time to get made up professionally. Danny asked me to be in Filipiniana attire. I didn’t really own any Filipiniana, or so I thought. ‘Til I remembered this Joey Samson cage terno he made for me for the Procter & Gamble 75th Anniversary Ball from 2010. I took the terno sleeves which came separately from the ball gown. Then in two minutes found an off-the-rack cheap cotton day dress in my closet. It was like P1,000. Put on black pumps, small south sea pearls from Jewelmer, did my makeup in the car, pulled my hair in a twisty bun using Goody screws and made it to the event on time.



Plet Bolipata and Elmer Borlongan



Last night I fell in love.

I was guest of honour at the gala opening of ManilART. A whole post on that after this.

I fell in love with the works of Elmer Borlongan and Plet Bolipata at the Boston Gallery’s booth. I’ve seen their works before. But never together in one spot. This is what I’ve been hungry for. That “feeling.” I’ll stop gushing because you’ll all think it’s crazy talk. Haha.

It is an honour to have a Bolipata and a Borlongan in this year’s UNICEF Auction for Action. Bidding continues until October 7. This is a rare chance to own their pieces way below gallery/market price. So please spread the word. Plet and Emong donated their works 100%. All proceeds go to UNICEF programs for kids in the Philippines.




“Cain and Abel. Baa Baa Black Sheep and Waa Waa White Sheep: Sibling Rivalry”, (H:63″, L: 94″, D: 29″, each). Behind it on the wall is a painting by Elmer Borlongan.


Owner of Boston Gallery, Dr. Joven Cuanang.


Half of the “Cain and Abel” story. This is “Waa Waa White Sheep: Sibling Rivalry”, (H:63″, L: 94″, D: 29″)


Cain and Abel
Here’s how they look like together. Complete madness! I love them. Photo from Plet Bolipata’s Facebook.


Brochure from a recent Alliance Francaise show – for husband and wife, Elmer and Plet


Public art galore! Adorable animal sculptures in Plet’s garden in Zambales. These were the lovelies in her show “imagiNATION” at Bonifacio Global City’s Offsite Gallery. Photo by Elmer Borlongan, from Plet’s Facebook.


Plet Bolipata
From Plet’s Facebook, her caption reads, “Ev’ry time we say goodbye, I die a little…” Goodnight, peeps. This little kitty cat wants to sleep. Photo by Elmer Borlongan


Plet donated the pink kitty cat to our UNICEF Auction for Action. Photo by Elmer Borlongan, from Plet’s Facebook.


And Elmer donated his work from 2006. He said he didn’t have enough time to paint something new that fit our theme “Play” so he gave a drawing from his archives. Convoy, Pastel on paper, 16.5 x 23 inches, 2006. (Apparently the original painting of this is owned by Karen Davila). It currently has the most bids among the lot, and it’s only Day 3. You can keep track here.


Black Hat in a Pink Kitty by Plet Bolipata. This is how it appears in the site. But this photo doesn’t quite give the piece justice.


Plet Bolipata
The scale, the proportion, the craziness. Please keep track of Plet’s Kitty Kat in the auction here.


This was the note Plet sent me a few weeks ago near our Auction deadline –

Dear Daphne

My parents, when they were younger and newly married, co-authored a book on stories of UNICEF which they published and distributed in public schools all over the Philippines. I grew up with this book so it sentimental for me to help in anyway possible.

I was able to finish one fiberglass resin kitty cat for the auction. Happiness!



Thank you, Plet. I want a piece of your world now. I want to see life through the eyes of a child. Lily, my 6 year old, just saw your photos and she was giddy! “It is the same sculptures from the park I went to.” Patrick took her to Bonifacio weeks ago. She wants to be an artist just like you. And she wants this pink kitty in her bedroom. Haha! Thank you for sharing your wonderland and for making a huge difference in the lives of children!







Baby Valencia’s corner


House of Baby Valencia, on Urban Zone
Back in 2008, I had the chance to spend a day in this beautiful cottage near Tagaytay. This is the home of artist Araceli Valencia. We all call her Tita Baby. She is the mother of fashion designer Rhett Eala. I met her through artist Popo San Pascual.


"grand staircase"
Her garden was endless. I was inspired by creative people like Tita Baby, Tita Sonya (of Sonya’s Garden), Tonyboy (of Antonio’s Restaurant) and Popo to one day own a part of this world and make a home in it.


at her garden
Her garden was so lush. And she had this special Medinilla sp. plant found in the jungles of Quezon province. According to my plant and wildlife expert friend Dr Rico Quimbo, “They’re not cheap. They’re all over the phiippines but the best and showy ones are in the Southern Tagalog area. Saw a truly resplendent representative in the Samar Island National Park.” I love our endemic vegetation.


House of Baby Valencia, on Urban Zone
Her cottage had a beautiful wrap-around porch.


Dining room Her cottage had an open plan. You see the dining area and sleeping quarters all under one roof.


Her bedroom, visible from the living and dining areas.


House of Baby Valencia, on Urban Zone
She surrounded herself with beautiful objects – both created by man and by nature.


Jasmine flowers from her garden.


Still Life
Washed up corals and antique dishes.


Her paint brushes
Her paint brushes.


One of her paintings
And just by her back porch hangs this beautiful painting. (Found this coincidentally! This photo is from 2008).


Baby Valencia A Corner in my Garden_ed
This is the same exact painting she donated to UNICEF’s Auction for Action. Baby Valencia’s “A Corner in My Garden”. Beautiful.


You can keep an eye out or bid on this painting at UNICEF’s Auction for Action here.







My pendants



Daphne Jewellery in Accessory Lab
Too busy to take proper pictures. This is from my Instagram.


I just dropped off these hand-painted icons in Accessory Lab, Powerplant Mall on Sunday afternoon. By Monday morning, the owner of the shop texted me to say they have all been bought. Wow.

Thank you to all of you who are interested in them. Thanks for appreciating the work that goes into them. They are all handmade.

I should be dropping more medals by the end of the week. Because there is very limited stock and the medals are quite rare, I don’t think I can accept any specific orders at the moment. But I do have some pretty ones that are about to be delivered in Accessory Lab.

Thanks for your patience.



SC Vizcarra



The UNICEF Auction for Action went live today. We had a wonderful start. Some items are already flying off the charts. Some have surpassed my “internal limits” – I wanted to bid a few things too. I know many of you have different strategies for eBay. This is going to be so exciting. And for such a good cause!


At Mornings @ANC with Paolo Abrera promoting the launch of @unicefphils #auction4action now live at
I spent the morning as guest of Mornings @ANC promoting the auction while highlighting some pieces. You can log on to to see the over 80 items up for bid.


Town&Country nanna
Last Saturday I got a message from SC Vizcarra‘s Rita Nazareno. She asked if she could donate a bag like this. It was one day before auction. I accepted her offer.


Auction for Action 2012 Catalogue-p79
Here is the Nanna bag by SC Vizcarra. It is so well crafted, the bag is completely reversible! And I love the colour she gave.


Watch or bid on the Nanna bag here.