MULTIMEDIA artist Bamboo Tonogbanua is a proverb in his hometown's extensive community of artists and art enthusiasts.
He naturally loves art to heart. He was the lone initiator of putting up a meticulously well-arranged, well-zoned, and world-class Miniature Christmas Village at the confines of his beautiful home situated at San Juan Street or the heart of downtown Bacolod City.
Amazingly, the tiniest piece of art exhibits a scenic representation of a zestful and colorful life he created by his creative imagination.
Bamboo loves to travel the world, collecting miniature figures relevant to his art collections.
Long years before the pandemic, "I go places abroad, and when I go around, I already have my focus on scenes that I want to create when I get home. So, I love tiny pieces, bought them and collected them, and I started to make a Christmas village on one table size of plywood, and every year, I expanded it. Until now that I have filled up more or less a 30 square meter room on the second floor of my house," he said.
He mounted this scenic miniature Christmas village for the love of Christmas and the love of tiny things. When you look closer to these small pieces of art, you can see facial expressions of the people with scenes that depict how they live and how their community exists, as if there's real life in the tiny villages and communities that I have created only at the confines of my room. I love collecting action figures, putting them together, and making a life for them amazingly," he shared.
Bamboo's art collections spun from the nativity diorama scene in a 3D setting, located on the ground floor of his house to pirates chest and dollhouses, among others.
On the second floor, there goes the beautiful and fantastic Christmas village that features happy scenes of Christmas, small figures for the China Town, the European houses, Glasshouses, the Disneyland, a tiny cable car, a symbol of English writer and social critic Charles Dickens, the Harry Potter scenery on top of the Christmas village, people riding the horses, dancing, playing, working, all are having fun from children to adult.
His room is like a book where you can turn pages full of excitement. Everything moves and has life.
Bamboo is known for costume designs and stage productions as an integral part of the famous MassKara festival. He worked with renowned artists, the late Peque Gallaga, Rene Hinojales, etc. He used to be a Professor of the Fine Arts at La Consolacion College in Bacolod City.
His Miniature Chrismas Village is considered a tourist attraction. He said children love Christmas too. They enjoyed it when they got here before.
"You don't have to explain to them the scenery. Children find their way to interpret, appreciate and enjoy it."
Tonogbanua opted to defer the opening of the Christmas village this Season because of the pandemic.
"I want to share this with everyone. But since there is a pandemic, I have to put safety first," he said.
It is always a good year for the last 25 years. Every Christmas, I feel so high and happy that I have this Christmas village where I can enjoy taking care of. I thank everyone who joined me in my hobby. The people who come and visit my Christmas village before the pandemic and my family also add gifts to combine with my plenty of collections as something that I can incorporate. I am happy that I have already turned a multitude of people, including my family, into my hobby," he said.
He encouraged everyone to keep safe until the pandemic is over.
"We will soon see each other at the Christmas village," he said.
BACOLOD. Bamboo Tonogbanua's gentle creations, the famous Miniature Christmas Village on its Silver (25th) anniversary. (Carla N. Cañet photo)
BACOLOD. The Pirates Chest. (Carla N. Cañet photo)
BACOLOD. The Harry Potter scene is on top of the Miniature Christmas Village. (Carla N. Cañet photo)
BACOLOD. The festive Christmas scenery is so lovely to stare at. (Carla N. Cañet photo)
December 03, 2021
- A A +
SunStar website welcomes friendly debate, but comments posted on this site do not necessarily reflect the views of the SunStar management and its affiliates. SunStar reserves the right to delete, reproduce, or modify comments posted here without notice. Posts that are inappropriate will automatically be deleted.
Do not use obscenity. Some words have been banned. Stick to the topic. Do not veer away from the discussion. Be coherent. Do not shout or use CAPITAL LETTERS!