City hall as art gallery proposed

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BAGUIO CITY  – The City Council approved on first reading a proposed ordinance declaring Baguio City Hall as a museum and art gallery for visual art, allowing the use of its lobby, available walls and possible spaces for the purpose, creating a committee to act as museum or art gallery curator and appropriating funds for the said purpose.

The ordinance authored by Councilor Lilia A. Fariñas stated that the Baguio City Hall museum and art gallery committee will be chaired by the City Mayor with the Special Services Division serving as action officer while the chairperson of the City Council Committee on Tourism, Special Events, Parks and Playgrounds, the chairperson of the City Council Committee on Education, Culture and Historical Research; chairperson of the City Council Committee on Urban Planning, Land and Housing; chairperson of the City Council Committee on Social Services, Women and Urban Poor; City Environment and Parks Management officer; Supervising Tourism Operations officer, and other offices or agencies that may be deemed necessary, as members.

The ordinance stipulated the duties of the Baguio city Hall museum and art gallery committee shall determine the possible available spaces, such as walls along the halls, the lobby and other areas, which can be utilized for the exhibit of visual arts; coordinate with the security personnel in charge of the city hall premises in ensuring the protection and safety of the art pieces in display from theft and vandalism; provide for secondary frames, aluminum and glass enclosures, or cordons as may be necessary for the protection of the art pieces from the public who might be tempted to touch them and thereby taint the works of art; provide additional closed circuit television cameras or additional security personnel as may be needed; entertain, accept or reject prospective exhibitors for the display of their works subject to the qualifications of their art, in accordance to the regulations that shall be created; determine the prices with regard to the use of the art gallery, the sharing scheme between the local government and the art exhibitor, the duration of the art exhibit, and all other pertinent activities with regard to its functions as an art gallery, and all other duties and responsibilities that may be deemed necessary towards the successful implementation of the measure.

The ordinance proposed the appropriation of the amount of P300,000 from the annual budget of the local government to sustain the implementation of the establishment of the museum and art gallery.

On October 31, 2017, Baguio was designated as one of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Creative Cities on crafts and folk arts.

The ordinance noted that Baguio City has been known as a haven for artists in all aspects of performing and visual arts and it is also home to world-renowned and national artists.

Sections 14, 15, and 16, Article XIV of the 1987 Constitution declares that the State shall foster the preservation, enrichment, and dynamic evolution of a Filipino culture based on the principle of unity in diversity in a climate of free artistic and intellectual expression.

Further, arts and letters shall also enjoy the patronage of the State and that it shall conserve, promote, and popularize the nation’s historical and cultural hesitate and resources, as well as artistic creations.

By Dexter A. See

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