The late Geoffrey Carantes was given due recognition for his artworks in a fitting event with the crafting of an appropriate inscription in line with the celebration of the Adivay Festival entitled, “Adivay: Celebrating our Art, Culture and History.”
Carantes’ illustration formed part of the book written by Anavic Bagamaspad and Zenaida Hamada-Pawid entitled “A Peoples’ History of Benguet Province” depicting the periods of lives of the people of the province from the pre-historic era to the coming of the Spaniards, American, Japanese until the contemporary period.
Governor Crescencio Pacalso handed the inscription of Carantes’ piece to his three children led by Lynette Grace. It was sketched in 1982 using the medium pen and ink on parchment paper with the dimension of 370 centimeters (cm) by 30 cm.
It was enlarged through a concrete relief by Dominador Carantes, a cousin of the artist, with the dimension of 558 cm. by 308 cm. It is mounted at the Provincial Capitol stairway going up the second floor.
The recognition of Carantes may soon pave the way for artists who have contributed and made impact in the arts and culture, said Jeanira Okubo, Executive Assistant of the Office of the Governor and organizer of the said event.
Hopefully, the activity will be carried out yearly and be given a space for the other artists and their artworks, Okubo added.
Pawid recounted apart that from Carantes’ artworks, he was also instrumental in the gathering of historical narratives from his students way back when he taught at the Baguio Tech, now the University of Baguio. These were used as part of the province’s history book which Pawid and Bagamaspad authored.
In behalf of the family, Lynette acknowledged the provincial government’s efforts and the people behind for finally giving recognition to the works of their father. She also read the message of her eldest brother Jude describing their father’s life and views.
True to his passion, “he devoted his art not only in a language of capturing series of historical occasions but the aspirations of a people which he admired and affectionately saw himself to be one,” Lynette stressed.
Also staged during the event was a play on the province’s history led by the Benguet State University Department of Development Communication with the special participation of the National Institute of Information Technology including Lynette’s involvement.
Moreover, University of the Philippines Dean, College of Arts and Communication Jimmy Fong who rewrote the province’s history book in 2010 challenged the youth of today to continue writing a story saying, “iF you cannot write, then perhaps you can draw, if you cannot draw then you can paint, if you cannot paint then take photographs or maybe go further into making movies.” By Susan C. Aro (JDP/SCA-PIA CAR, Benguet)