Bukidnon gears up for next year’s Soil Painting Festival

More than 80 soil paintings are created from the two-day workshop at the Kaamulan Open Theater, the first of series toward making Bukidnon a “gallery.” | Bukidnon News photo by Hazel A. Generalao

More than 80 soil paintings are created from the two-day workshop at the Kaamulan Open Theater, the first of series toward making Bukidnon a “gallery.” | Bukidnon News photo by Hazel A. Generalao

MALAYBALAY CITY (Bukidnon News/29 April) More than five thousand soil paintings of Bukidnon culture are aimed to be created for next year’s Soil Painting Festival.

To achieve such feat, workshops promoting soil as a medium has been started last April 15-16 at the Kaamulan Open Theater which gathered both children and adults.

The series of soil painting workshops will serve as a prelude for the Soil Painting Festival on April 2014, also part of Bukidnon’s Centennial celebration on September 2014.

These workshops, organized by Bukidnon-based artists and the Bukidnon Tourism Office among others, are done to make the province a “gallery (of soil paintings).”

Rogelio “Waway” Saway, one of pioneers of soil painting in the province, said he envisions soil paintings showcased not only in museums and art exhibits but also in government, non-governmental offices, establishments and even in every home in the province.

The Talaandig artist said that using soil widely as a medium will help propel Bukidnon as “soil painting capital of the world” and will also create a Guinness world record of the most number of soil paintings.

More than 80 soil painting pieces resulted from the first workshop. The next one will be after the election and most likely before the summer ends, said the coordinators. By then, with the help of the newly elected governor and local officials and possible support from the Department of Education, to name a few, the vision may spread and be made possible in various communities.

These soils, taken from Sungko, Lantapan and the Kaamulan grounds, come in various colors. | Bukidnon News photo by Hazel A. Generalao

These soils, taken from Sungko, Lantapan and the Kaamulan grounds, come in various colors. | Bukidnon News photo by Hazel A. Generalao


Laila Rubin Marte of the Bukidnon Tourism Office said the turn-out is satisfactory considering it is just the start. The participants were allowed to bring their creations at home and they will be invited to showcase their paintings in the next workshops to bring inspiration to new participants, she added.

The soil art pieces will gradually accumulate with the series of workshops and on the festival next year, all creations will be brought and arranged at the Capitol grounds, as participants will be invited to paint at the center while Bukidnon artists play music, said Saway.

“Let us make soil painting as flag-bearer of Bukidnon culture, so that everything else will follow, para ang ang farmers mabuhi, mga magtanom ug gabi ug kape mabuhi,” Saway said stressing the benefits of tourism from soil painting in the province.

“It’s my first time doing a soil painting, ‘tsada siya ug dili na kailangan mugasto sa paint,” said Windel Salas, a 20-year-old participant.

It was in 1993 when Waway together with fellow artists Tatting Soliva and Egay Dy, while clay painting, thought of using soil instead. Waway said his friend and fellow visual artist Kublai Millan (born Rey Mudjahid Ponce Millan) of Davao further enhanced the soil art by introducing acrylic emulsion as finishing coat. Also important during the development of soil painting were visual artist Errol Balcos of Cagayan de Oro City and Atty. Tanya Lat from Metro Manila as partners of Talaandig artists in promoting soil art in the overseas, added Saway.

Soil, one of our most important natural resources, comes in different colors, said Talaandig visual and music artist Marcelino ‘Balugto’ Necosia. He and Saway added that soil may be colored brown, black, grey, red, maroon, orange, yellow, sky blue-like, or green; depending on its depth. The soils used for the workshops were taken from Sungko, Lantapan and from the Kaamulan grounds. (Hazel A. Generalao/BukidnonNews.net)