art fairs

Bigger and better: The Visayas Art Fair is back!

John Sitchon
Bigger and better: The Visayas Art Fair is back!

FIRST LOOK. Galleries and organizations at the Visayas Art Fair 2022 will reprise the 2021 display of new artists' work/

Cebu Design Week Facebook

World-famous designer Kenneth Cobonpue curates the Bodega Caravan, a creative marketplace harking back to early traveling caravans that carried goods from village to village

CEBU, Philippines – Architects, gallery creatives, and other artists are coming back to Cebu from November 24 to 27 to join one of the biggest art fairs in the country: the Visayas Art Fair (VAF).

“We have 33 participating galleries; 14 are from the NCR,” VAF chairperson Laurie Boquiren announced in a press conference on Wednesday, November 16.

This is the second VAF organized by Cebu Design Week and will be held at Oakridge Business Park. The first was held at Montebello Villa Hotel in November 2021.

Around 1,500 works by more than 500 artists will be presented during the four-day event. Organizers expect around 1,000 guests per day.

“What to watch out for this year’s VAF is the Bodega Caravan,” Boquiren said.

The Bodega Caravan is a creative marketplace curated by world-known designer Kenneth Cobonpue.

In a video message, Cobonpue said the event is inspired by early traveling caravans that carried goods from village to village.

The event features items from different sustainable art and furniture companies like Cebu Homecraft, Lakat Sustainables, and La Galuche, to name a few.

“I personally handpicked the companies that are going to be assembled at the Oakridge tent and each company has something unique and exciting to share to all of you,” Cobonpue said.

The Bodega Caravan will also host the entries of the Blue Mango Awards, where a new category for Placemaking is spearheaded by architect Buck Sia of the United Architects of the Philippines in Cebu and other heads of the Philippine Institute of Interior Designers-Cebu Chapter.

Recognition for artists

Renowned artist Emmanuel “Manny” Garibay, founder of the Linangan Art Residency Program, will discuss Art in the Regions and how diverse artists enrich their work through immersion in community-building projects.

Ever since the success of the first VAF in 2021, which drew thousands of guests from all over the country, local artists and exhibits have caught the eyes of big-time art collectors.

“Many of these paintings were expensive but they still sold to collectors who perhaps did not want to reveal themselves. This means that there are plenty of silent collectors here in Cebu,” Boquiren said.

The chairwoman also shared that they are now getting participants from abroad.

“We are getting recognized internationally. In fact, we are getting a gallery from Korea,” Boquiren added.

Organizers hope that this would continue to bring more people into the Visayas region, becoming a central hub for the nation’s artists and patrons alike.

For more details on the scheduled programs and activities, you can visit the official Visayas Art Fair Facebook page here.  –

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