Western Mindanao State University (WMSU) President Dr. Eldigario D. Gonzales took up the cudgels for the city’s neglected artists and cultural community by announcing last Saturday the establishment of an art gallery in the university campus.
Dr. Gonzales made the announcement during the opening of an art exhibit at the WMSU Social Hall last Saturday, July 17, dubbed as “A Celebration of Life Through the Arts – A Tribute to the President on His 7th Year as President of WMSU.”
The art show project, which will run on till July 24 during which it is open to the public from 8:00 o’clock in the morning to 5:00 o’clock in the afternoon, was initiated by Ms. Icelle Borja-Estrada on the occasion of the seventh anniversary of the assumption of office by Dr. Gonzales. It is spearheaded by the Public Affairs Office under Director Prof. Ali T. Yacub.
City Vice-Mayor Isabel Climaco, who graced the occasion in her speech extolled the efforts of WMSU to promote art and education in the city and noted that she is conscious of the crucial importance of education in the socio-economic development of the city.
Dr. Gonzales said the gallery will be located in the main building of the university, where the College of Education is housed at the moment. He has also ordered that a university information center be set up in the adjacent kiosk, Prof. Yacub disclosed.
Some of the artworks on display are for sale, Ms. Estrada said, to defray the cost of the project. She will also donate some of the prints to WMSU, she added.
On exhibit is an assortment of old, vintage metal etchings and photographs of scenes of old Zamboanga and natives done by traveling artists and photographers as well as contemporary paintings and sculptures including works of Ms. Estrada herself.
The opening was attended by university officials and art enthusiasts.
Prof. Yacub during the opening program said the art show is a fitting tribute to Dr. Gonzales because the latter initiated various art and culture related projects in the campus during his administration, including the establishment of the Office of Culture and the Arts, which has backed projects like the formation of the University Theater Guild and other art associations in the institution and participation in cultural activities in the city. (Ray-Luis Banagudos / Public Affairs Office – WMSU).