For Pride Month, Quest Hotel and Conference Center Cebu embraces the spirit of love, acceptance and equality by hosting a series of thrilling Pride Month activities with the theme “Happy to Be.”

On June 2, 2023, art lovers and enthusiasts had the opportunity to immerse themselves in an art riveting display in the hotel lobby.

Dubbed “Humanizing SOGIE,” the exhibit included a variety of thought-provoking artworks by Toledo Neo Artists Group (TNAG) artists that celebrated the LGBTQ+ experience, encouraged self-expression, and explored the themes of love, identity and equality.

Here is a rundown of TNAG artists and their background:

Ma. Rowena M. Vios

Rowena rediscovered her intrinsic enthusiasm for the arts later in life and has spent the last several years honing her talents as an artist. She has had multiple exhibitions and eventually decided to launch the Vios Center of Arts Learning Center as a resource for starving and aspiring artists. She was also a founding member of the TNAG, which she currently leads as president.

Junna Lumbao

Junna is a self-taught artist and housewife who had always been inspired to explore the arts. After accepting multiple assignments and gaining renown for her charcoal portraits during the pandemic, drawing became her bread and butter. She then joined the TNAG and has shown her work in various shows in Manila and Cebu.

Marlone Ylanan

Marlone has always had an interest in the arts, but it wasn’t until high school that he was taught the principles of art by a neighbor. He was offered opportunities to undertake multiple exhibitions in Cebu and Manila after perfecting his talents, growing his art, and participating in several sessions with fellow artists. He painted a variety of subjects, having a particular fondness for landscapes and animal figures.

Anthony Vios Uy

Anthony is a business marketing and film graduate who has dabbled in a variety of artistic fields such as photography, acting, filmmaking, graphic design and formerly worked as a radio DJ and host for various events and concerts. After several years of being out of practice, he returned to his creative origins and began painting again after the pandemic, and he continues to experiment and include various techniques, inspiration, ideas and mediums in his artwork.

Kenneth Baghol Gequillo

Kenneth is a seasoned professional artist who concentrates on the sensual nature of painting, attempting to convey the complexities of life and everyday events of regular living. He is a fine arts graduate of the University of the Philippines Cebu who rose to prominence after placing second in the International Watercolor Society (IWS) Dubai and being a finalist in the Metrobank Art and Design Excellence (MADE).

Jess Dinglasa

Born and raised in Samboan, Jess traveled to the city to participate in exhibitions and national art competitions with other artists. He believes that art is life and life is art, and he is constantly striving to better himself. In 2018, he took home the President’s Choice Awards in the 3rd GSIS National Watercolor Competition and received third honorable mention in the GSIS National Watercolor Exhibition.

Randy C. Plarisan

Randy discovered his passion for arts at a young age, creating family portraits as the oldest of four children. In 2016, he began painting full-time and became a member of the Cebu Art Association, Aroma Art Atelier, and, finally, TNAG. He took part in a number of exhibitions. He has earned accolades since 2009, and he recently finished second in the Artopstic Plein Air Painting Competition in 2022.

Renulo Pautan

Spending so much time with the Alcosebas—studying and absorbing the fundamentals and principles of art, as well as understanding the life of a painter—helped define Renulo’s artistic approach, focusing on landscapes and country life. He devotes his time to contests, studio work, and Plein Air painting. He’s also had shows in Cebu, Manila, Malaysia and Paris.

Meriam Abasa

Meriam is a young lady from Western Cebu and enjoys doing art with various media such as oil, watercolor, and charcoal as part of her practice.

Cesar Castillo

Cesar’s parents wanted him to live a life of ease based on a steady wage, so his desire to pursue the arts was put on hold. He accepted a thrilling but unexpected career in painting a few years later, after his early retirement, with an optimistic heart. Throughout his journey, he dug deeper to understand the purpose of his art, conveying his message and ideals to anybody who chooses to listen with their eyes.

Lordzell Perez

Lordzell is an artist from Danao City who was inspired to pursue arts at an early age through comics. He soon found himself creating various artworks and paintings over the years, and it became a love for him. Despite being unable to pursue his passion, he finally joined other artist groups.

Bethram Dacuma-Alegado

Bethram is a self-taught Cebuano painter from Toledo City. She resorted to painting as rehabilitation after a motorcycle accident in 2020. Several of her works have been shown on Philippine national television and news, and are part of the National Commission for Culture and Arts’ “Siningspirasyon” segment. She has shown her work in Egypt, Guatemala, India, Belgium and Iran, and she is a member of the Voice of International Professional Art Association in New York.

On top of the exhibit and several hotel activities, Quest Hotel and Conference Center Cebu is showing its support for the LGBTQ+ community by selling Pride and Rainbow pastries throughout the month of June. Part of proceeds will be donated to the LoveYourself organization, a non-profit organization committed to HIV testing, support and education for the LGBTQ+ community.