It is very rare to get up close to the works of Philippine National Artist for Fashion Ramom Valera. The last time there was a full exposition on his body of work was back in 2003 at the National Museum. So when the College of Saint Benilde invited me to a exhibition of his work I immediately cleared my schedule and decided to take my entire creative team to the exhibition.
Ramon Valera was nothing short of a genius. He was a close friend of my Grand mother Betty and he created many memorable dresses for her and her sisters. She even traveled with him to Japan and many other countries and developed a keen and deep friendship. I was very close to my Lola and she spoke to Ramon often and fondly. I am lucky to have inherited several gowns of hers made my Ramon Valera and they are in my mind dear and true treasures.
Ramon was schooled in De La Salle University and the opening of the exhibition fell on his birthday. So it was really an emotional opening night filled with nostalgia and joy. In fact most of his family was there and two of his great grand children are being educated in film and fashion at the College of Saint Benilde. On display is more than 3 dozen examples of his masterpieces each more glorious than the next. I loved how The College of Sainte Belied is introducing this experience to another generation. A generation perhaps not exposed to what he did and the time that he represented.
I appreciate and respect what The College is doing and I encourage everyone to come and take the time to see this exhibit which is on going until the 14th of October. It is a wonderful exhibition filled with many things to learn and understand. The tedious timeline of Ramon Valera’s life in connection with various historical events happening in the world and in the Philippines alone is worth the trip. I particularly loved the communication and reaction of the young student designers which were tasked to create pieces inspired by the great master.
I for one was on a fashion hight seeing all these beautiful examples of exquisite workmanship on display. It is by looking back and understanding our past than we truly are able to move forward and grow. Bravo to The College of Saint Belied and everyone behind it headed Ms. Lulu Tan Gan. All your efforts are so appreciated