Famous Filipino Artists And Their Works – The Philippines is known as a melting pot of beauty. Apart from its beautiful scenery, the country also boasts of its rich culture – making it an attractive choice for adventure-seeking travelers of all kinds.

Whether it’s exploring the mountains, conquering the waves, or celebrating vibrant festivals, the Philippines never seems to be out of options.

Famous Filipino Artists And Their Works

Famous Filipino Artists And Their Works

It includes places where you can glimpse its tragic but fascinating history through the artefacts that depict it.

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Want to dive deeper into the Philippines’ art scene? Here are the ten most famous Filipino paintings and where you can see them:

Considered the largest painting in the Philippines, “Spolirium” is one of the masterpieces of Filipino painter Juan Luna. It represents the bloody gladiator matches of the Romans but is also an allegory of the despair and mistreatment Filipinos faced during the Spanish rule in the country.

The artwork currently stands tall in the center of the main gallery of the National Museum of Fine Arts with dimensions of 4.22 m x 7.675 m.

An artist known for his unique art style and realistic paintings, Filipino painter Fernando Amorsolo is best known for his depictions of the country’s culture, its scenic landscapes, portraits of women, and World War II scenes.

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One of his most famous paintings is “Planting Rice”, where he depicts a group of farmers – both men and women – toiling under the sun.

Like “Spolirium”, it can be seen along with his other pieces at the National Museum of Fine Arts in Manila.

The Philippine art scene would not be complete without a mention of National Artist Benedicto Cabrera. His artworks are currently displayed inside his museum in Baguio City, including his famous painting “Sabel”.

Famous Filipino Artists And Their Works

Cabrera previously stated that “Sabel” is a homeless Filipino woman whom he photographed and first sketched in 1965. Her nature became a symbol of desolation, despair, and isolation for the painter—making her a recurring subject in his figurative paintings.

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A key modernist painting in the 1950s, Vicente Mansala’s “Madonna of the Slum” depicts a mother and child who, after leaving their provincial lives, become slum dwellers in the city.

There have been many interpretations of the artwork but a prominent one states that it represents the anxiety and insecurity of the Philippines after the war.

Also known as Interior d’un Cafe (or Inside the Cafe), the Impressionist painting is another masterpiece by Juan Luna. Unlike his earlier works, “Parisian Life” eschews his usual intense and dramatic themes and instead depicts “a fleeting moment of ordinary life” during his residence in Paris in the 1890s.

At the center of the artwork is a young woman sitting uncomfortably on a sofa while behind her are three Filipino patriots who would eventually change the history of the country – Luna himself, Jose Rizal, and Ariston Bautista Lin.

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Another Filipino gem is contemporary painter Elmer Borlongan. Born in the urban, Borlongan sought to depict everyday life in the city.

His famous work “The Happiest Place on Earth”, is currently stored in the Pinto Art Museum in Antipolo City, Rizal.

The rise of the people and the fall of the dictatorship through the 1986 EDSA People Power Revolution are among the major events that changed Philippine history.

Famous Filipino Artists And Their Works

Amidst the chaos was Benedicto Cabrera, who embodied the Philippines’ civil resistance at the time through his controversial art piece “Yellow Confetti.”

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A depiction of the first documented Christian mass in the Philippines in 1521, “First Mass in Limasawa” is one of Carlos Modesto “Botong” Villaluz Francisco’s most important paintings.

The national government commissioned Francisco to create artwork to commemorate 400 years of the Christianization of the Philippines.

The only female member of the “13 Moderns”, Anita Magsaysay-Ho’s artworks reflect her high regard for women in Filipino culture. This is true in all his paintings including “Three Women with Baskets” where he depicts female basket weavers enthralled with their daily lives.

Other members of the “13 Moderns” are: Botong Francisco, Galo Ocampo, Lorenzo, Vicente Mansala, HR Ocampo, Anita Magasesay-Ho, Cesar Legaspi, Demetrio Diego, Ricardo Purugnan, Jose Pardo, Bonifacio Cristobal and Arsenio Capelli.

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No Filipino artist does abstract painting like National Artist for Visual Arts Jose Joya. With his amazing technique called “gestural painting” or “action painting”.

Although this is his interpretation of the hills in Nikko, Japan, critics say Joya’s painting is an allegory of human imperfections.


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