Auction for Action: Paintings

UNICEF Auction for Action small

You may still be wondering why I’m bombarding you with Auction for Action information. I’ve been working with the UNICEF team on this for months. Prior to this, I’ve helped them educate moms all over the country on maternal health, mortality and breastfeeding. This time, I want to help UNICEF raise awareness and funds for all their other goals: providing children with health care, access to safe water and sanitation, education, and protection from violence, abuse and exploitation. I thought the best way I could contribute is by extending the goodwill of my friends… most of whom happen to be design superstars. And I know you, my readers are very much into design, art, style and fashion.

Here are some of the paintings donated by top artists for Auction for Action.

u-sanso1 u-dominicrubio u-hamzah.marbella u-dominicrubio2 u-poposanpascual u-mannybaldemor u-billymondonedo1 u-tomepperson

UNICEF focuses on reaching the poorest, most disadvantaged families in the Philippines, and through our partners we work and advocate to ensure children grow up healthy, go to school, are protected from harm and develop to reach their full potential. UNICEF relies entirely on voluntary donations from individuals like yourself (as well as corporations and governments) to fund its programmes for children.

There are more items up for bidding, this is just a preview. The complete catalog will be available online for viewing at Auction for Action goes live in on May 25, 2011. Counting on you to please spread the word.

Thank you.


Buck Sia, Architect

By Buck Sia, architect
Architect: Buck Sia, Zubu Design Associates

The rectangular plot of land located inside a gated community has a difference of elevation of about 8 meters, with the entry at the bottom of the lot. This left us no choice but to cut a portion of the lot to accommodate the garage and entry. Thus, creating the cut portion with the garage, bedrooms stacked one upon another; leaving the social spaces resting on the original elevation of back portion of the lot. The atrium with a bamboo courtyard holds the main circulation space of the house; this binds the social spaces and the private spaces.
Source: Zubu Design Associates

Last Sunday I featured this house in Cebu. I was very impressed with Buck Sia’s work. This house sits on a 250 square metre lot with a dramatic elevation of 8 metres. So it’s quite steep. Buck used whatever limitations the site offered and turned it into an advantage. The result is a stunning space that not only looks good in pictures but is also a success in terms of comfort. I’ve seen way too many homes that look good but are actually heat traps. Beware. An architect must know the principles of tropical architecture first before going nuts on modern design.

UZ in cebu
Dramatic foyer

UZ in cebu
From the foyer your eyes are drawn upwards to these dramatic spiral steps

UZ in cebu
Halfway through

UZ in cebu
Two flights of steps lead you to the top floor living room, kitchen, dining room and master bedroom

UZ in cebu
Harnessing natural light

UZ in cebu
Those steps lead to the master bedroom

UZ in cebu
Check out the ceiling

UZ in cebu
Windows on both sides make the narrow space feel a lot wider

UZ in cebu
Master bedroom. The headboard is part of the wooden structure that juts out into the living room area

UZ in cebu
The storage shelves continue from the master bedroom to the outside living area

UZ in cebu
Everything the owner wants in one space

UZ in cebu
Loving those windows at the foot of the wall, for privacy.

UZ in cebu
With the architect, Buck Sia and his lovely wife Dulce.

For more of Buck’s work, check his firm’s website here.

Cambridge Satchel

The Cambridge Satchel Company
It seems everyone and her sister has a Cambridge satchel.

Patrick saw this Cambridge Satchel sometime last year and he wanted to buy me one and order my name embossed in it. Back then I was so sure I wasn’t a satchel girl. I didn’t even buy the Mulberry Alexa.

Saddleback Leather satchel
Patrick’s Saddleback Leather satchel.

I think Patrick’s satchel killed it for me. He has the “real one” from Saddleback Leather. It’s the type Indiana Jones would have worn in the Temple of Doom. It is huge and heavy. Real heavy. When this came in the mail, he wanted me to have one too. Like I said, I resisted.

Virginia's Cambridge satchel
Virginia of has the fluorescent yellow. I took this photo at the Tory Burch party in HK over the weekend.

Fast-forward to today, it seems that every blogger has written about and has ordered their own Cambridge satchel. I thought I wouldn’t fall for it, but when I saw she 11″ size, I couldn’t resist. I ordered from Schu in Rockwell.

Cambridge Satchels, available at Chocolate Schu Bar in Rockwell Powerplant.

Cambridge Satchel
I ordered the pink 11″. But when it came, I had second thoughts and compared it to the red one. In the end I chose the pink. I figured I could share this bag with Soph and Lily one day.

Cambridge is available at Chocolate Schubar, Power Plant, Glorietta 3, TriNoma and Mall of Asia. Or inquire through their website. The prices for the regular colours are – 11″ Php5,799, 13″ 5,999, 14″ 6,199 15″ 6,299, 15″ Batchel 7,299. And for the fluorescent ones, (coming in June) 11″ 6999, 13″ 7199, 14″ 7399, 15″ 7499, 15″ Batchel 8499. Designer/Multicolor 14″ 8299, 15″ 8399. Music Bag 7299

For stock availability call:
– schu Trinoma, M3, Ayala TriNoma, Mobile No. +63917 592 8802
– schu Glorietta 3, Mobile No. +63917 592 8801
– Chocolate schu Bar, R2, Power Plant, Tel. No. 899 6997; Mobile No. 0917 592 8809

Auction for Action: Experience Packages

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In addition to the amazing art and design pieces in Auction for Action, we’ve also put together some unique experience packages that bidders would definitely enjoy. Check these out:


Blue from American Express
If you win this bid, you get the chance to hang out with your favourite Azkals… in the dugout. Hello! Bid!!!


Antonio’s is my favourite restaurant.

Antonio's 2010
If you win this bid you get a full dinner for 4 persons.

And Chef Tonyboy Escalante will prepare something special just for your group.

Chef Tonyboy Escalante
Chef Tonyboy is an old friend of mine. He’s such a great host. It helps that he calls me his “lucky charm.” And when I asked him for a donation to Auction for Action, he was very very game.

Steak tartare. Yumm.

Antonio’s is our peg for our dream weekend house.

I hope you consider bidding for these packages. There are more items up for bidding, this is just a preview. Auction for Action goes live in on May 25, 2011. Counting on you to please spread the word.

Thank you.


Auction for Action: Reg Yuson

UNICEF Auction for Action small

How many times have I written about my love for public art and open spaces? When I was an urban planning student at the University of Toronto and an intern at Toronto City Hall, I found out that Toronto had a by-law stating every new property development had to have 1% of either the land area or the cost of the project go towards public art. It was no wonder that all buildings in downtown Toronto had great sculpture pieces — ones you can touch, climb, sit on, experience. We need more of that in Manila.

Art Gallery of Ontario
In Toronto, this is my favourite monumental sculpture — by Henry Moore.

Henry Moore sculpture
Another Henry Moore, this one in Boston, at the M.I.T. campus. The date, 2002. Bagets!

In Manila, I think Reg Yuson is one of the most brilliant sculptors we have. His monumental pieces are witty and have become icons in our landscape. I wish to see more Reg Yuson sculptures around Metro Manila. At yesterday’s press briefing for Auction for Action, I was asked which was my favourite piece. As founder of the event and curator of the collection, I felt it was inappropriate for me to answer. Besides, I am a fan of all the artists to begin with. And I personally own some of their work already. But one artist remains in my bucket list. I’ve discussed this with my husband before. I want a Reg Yuson sculpture in our front “yard”. I really do. Imagine, a Filipino bahay-na-bato with an art piece that’ll make you smile or make you go hmmm everytime you see it. I want!

Sound sculpture at High Street, by Reg Yuson
Been a fan of Reg Yuson since I found out he did this. It’s called “Hearsay” and it’s located at Bonifacio High Street. This is me and Soph when she was just 3.

Soph whispering inside the "sound sculpture"
A wider shot of Reg’s “Hearsay.” You whisper on one end, and your message will be received by someone at the other end… but not exactly the tube on the same axis. It’s like a game.

This sculpture is so interesting
Who hasn’t had their photo taken in this sculpture? It’s called “Specific Gravity.” An awesome landmark.

Reg Yuson's "Who's Afraid of Yellow"
This was Reg’s piece at Bo Concept’s party in 2009. He calls it “Who’s afraid of yellow?” I wonder if this had a political meaning. Found it witty though.

So needless to say, I am a fan of Reg Yuson. And I am so thrilled that he donated not just one but two pieces. Mozzarella and R. Muck & Du Paint. Please take the time to read the descriptions that go along with the photos. The Mozzarella (set of two) are actually seats made of foam.


Reg Yuson "Mozzarella"
OMG they do look like mozzarella cheese!

Furniture sculpture.

The Mozzarella cast foam furniture sculpture series was developed for over a year of constant trial and errors. Several mixtures were tested before coming up with the right foam density to ensure comfortable seating for long periods of time. With an innate interest in combining art and design, form and function, as well as understanding materials and processes, Yuson challenges himself with the concern of using the natural properties of materials as a crucial component in his creations.

Cast foam is a process that is not commonly used by furniture makers in the Philippines. The Mozzarella name came about when Yuson was exploring the raw materials for a foam seat concept and saw the process of making molded foam. It starts as a thick liquid mixture then poured to set inside the mold. As the material sets, the foam expands to assume the form of the mould and then you have a product. The foam sets into a solid form and later becomes yellowish in color, like that of the Mozzarella cheese.

Initial sales of the Mozzarella seats started in Singapore last year and will be sold in Manila after it’s launch sometime June of this year. It will ba a limited production series per mold.


Auction for Action goes live in on May 25, 2011. Counting on you to please spread the word.

Thank you.


*Edited May 18, 2011 5:30 pm