Saturday, June 4, 2011

Rizal Night

Before anything else, i just want to say that i still can't get over this painting. Juan Luna's Blast Furnaces of Vizcaya, painted in Vizcaya, Spain year 1893. He's proclaimed as the greatest painter in Philippine History. 
I'm magnetized. More than a hundred years but the depth and richness of the colours are still there. Like Spoliarium, Luna made this piece immortal. The photo can't even do justice on how beautiful this is up close. Why Juan Luna is included in significance, that i will tell on the next post

Now back to Rizal. To my foreign readers, Jose Rizal is the Philippine National Hero. We usually held annual celebration of his birthday to commemorate his huge share in our country's independence from Spanish colonization. Aside from that, we hail this man as a national genius. He was not only a writer and inventor, but he also practiced medicine, learned art, music, fencing, and a whole lot more ~ he was a living polymath of his time! He lived so knowledgeable that he was known to speak about twenty-two languages. 

Last night marks the first day of celebrating Rizal's life and accomplishments. Yuchengco Museum's packed with artworks and memorabilia, here are some i managed to take.  :) 
Jose Rizal's descendants. 

Jose Rizal's sketches.

His portrait sketch of a European. 

Jose Rizal (middle) with Juan Luna and Valentin Ventura. 

His violin.

I also noticed that he liked girls who knew how to play piano. Below are piano scores of women whose names are romantically attached to him: Leonor Rivera's copy of Chopin Nocturne and Josephine Bracken's Tosca score.
Reproduction of Josephine Bracken's (love) letter to Jose Rizal. The original pages are preserved somewhere.
The handwriting is so beautiful i wouldn't mind having a Bracken love letter typography type of tattoo on my back.

Rizal's embroidery design sketches. Yes, his talented hands also tried the garment design. 
Apart from making his own set of chess pieces, he also invented games ~ some believed with hidden messages of exposing colonial unjust and the aim for independence. 

The actual copy of  Noli Me Tangere & El Filibusterismo book Rizal authored, owned by Leonor Rivera's son.

His calling cards. 

 Rizal and his family.

Reproduction of Teodora Alonso's (Rizal's mother) petition letter for Rizal's pardon before he got executed. 

Rizal family visiting his grave. 

Seriously, there are still so much more to learn from the life of this man. I read Ambeth Ocampo's books about him and i'm stunned on how many things i still didn't know about this mortal who lived beyond anyone's expectations during his time. Indeed, inspiring. 

{Yuchengco Museum, 3rd of June}


  1. Your images are amazing! Such great history. (My dad was actually named after Jose Rizal; he was born on the anniversary of Rizal's death.)

  2. Cool family trivia! :) I think Jose is a cool name, too. I have a liking to Filipino and Spanish sounding names.