RITUALS marked the opening of the newest art hub in Sagada, the Sagada Dogo Siwang Art Hub.
A traditional "Sangbo"’ was done Thursday morning, December 13, administered by elder Esteban Capuyan Bosaing Sr. to bring blessings and health.
"Sangbo" is a mandatory ritual for Sagadans, done after construction to prevent sickness among members of the household and bring good tidings to the newly built spaces.
The Sagada Dogo Siwang Art Hub is a project by the Cordillera News Agency (CNA) in cooperation with the family of Sonia and David Daoas supported by the National Commission on Culture and the Arts (NCCA).
CNA with the Daoas family and NCCA created the art hub aiming to champion indigenous knowledge both for locals and visitors for the preservation and continuing exchange of knowledge, arts, culture and heritage.
The Sagada Dogo Siwang Art Hub is envisioned to become a bridge to connect the school systems to teach on tangible and intangible heritage as well as an open area for exhibitions of song, dance, journalism, chants, rituals, indigenous practices, visual arts and photography.
NCCA cluster head, Ferdinand Isleta of the NCCA said the NCCA commend CNA for the worthy effort in providing a venue to promote the rich cultural heritage of Sagada.
“The project aims to provide a venue for artists, cultural. Communities and cultural workers to work together to showcase the cultural traditions and artistic creativity of the people of Sagada. The general public has now an accessible venue to experience,” Isleta said.
The hub will also become a convergence for artists, educators and culture bearers not only for the Cordillera but the entire country and envisioned to become a venue for lectures and workshops in an ethnic setting and a space for local artisans to display their products and knowledge to train a new wave of artists for the coming generations.
Key areas of the Sagada Dogo Siwang Art Hub include, the Inatep, modeled from the traditional low beaned traditional hut houses a collection of artifacts, traditional attire and art works to be viewed by the public, the space is big enough to house small workshops and talks for students, artists and culture bearers.
Annab’s Dap-ay is a traditional gathering area for discussions and community talk, in the art hub, the area is open for all.
The stone seats of Annab’s Dap-ay represent the villages of Sagada - Aguid, Ambasing, Angkileng, Antadao, Balugan, Bangaan, Dagdag (Poblacion), Demang (Poblacion), Fidelisan, Kilong, Madongo, Patay (Poblacion), Pide, Nacagang, Suyo, Taccong, Tanulong, Tetepan Norte, and Tetepan Sur.
An eco-trail at the hub leads to the orange trees and tea shrubs which the public can partake of. It also houses traditional flora, landscaped and equipped with a viewing benches and picnic areas for gatherings.
An exhibit, “Coming Home,” by Doctor Philip Del Carmen is featured at the art space this month with the collection of Sonia Daoas.
Del Carmen’s exhibit is a collection of photographs depicting scenery and people that will show a majestic sunrise seen from the mountains, a culture and heritage preserved and passed on, rituals performed to appease your soul displayed to give homage to the beauty of the quiet town.
Del Carmen is an adopted son of Sagada to which has been given the name “Biag” which means life.
Del Carmen’s first exposure to photography was using his father's Nikon FTN analog camera that he brought in his early trips to Sagada.
In the present, he now handles a Panasonic Lumix which he used to mount his first solo exhibit, ‘Dagdagop,’ almost the same time three years ago at the Cafe by the Ruins in Baguio City.
‘Dagdagop’ was a fund raiser for the children with congenital heart problems whom he diagnosed at the Rural Health Unit in Sagada, since then, four children have been treated, giving them, a new life.
The photographs from the "Dagdagop" exhibit have now officially, come home.