National Artists of the Philippines (Filipino: Pambansang Alagad ng Sining ng Pilipinas) is an order bestowed by the Philippines on Filipinos who have made significant contributions to the development of Philippine art. Originally instituted as an Award, it was elevated to the status of Order in 2003.
The Order is administered by the Cultural Center of the Philippines by virtue of President Ferdinand Marcos's Proclamation № 1001 of April 2, 1972 and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts. The first award was posthumously conferred on Filipino painter Fernando Amorsolo.
The Order is the highest state honor conferred on individuals deemed as having done much for their artistic field. Deserving individuals must have been recommended by both the Cultural Center and the National Commission on Culture and the Arts prior to receiving the award. Such people are then titled, by virtue of a Presidential Proclamation, as National Artist (Filipino: Gawad Pambansang Alagad ng Sining, "National Servant of the Arts Award"), and are inducted into the Order.
Recipients attend a conferment ceremony at Malacañang Palace, where the President bestows on them the insignia of the Order: an ornate, gilt collar and a small pin, both depicting the Order's emblem. In addition to the collar, each new Member is given a citation that is presented during the conferment ceremony. The Cultural Center of the Philippines then presents a Memorabilia Exhibit of the recipients' works, and holds a Gabi ng Parangal (Night of Tributes) for the National Artists at the Tanghalang Pambansa.
Categories under which National Artists can be recognized originally included:
However, national artists have since been honored under new categories. The NCCA 'created' the category of National Artist for Fashion Design when it nominated Ramon Valera, but subsumed that category under "Architecture and Allied Arts". President Fidel V. Ramos issued an executive order creating the category of National Artist for Historical Literature before conferring the honor to Carlos Quirino.
Nominations for National Artist of the Philippines are based on a broad criteria, as set forth by the Cultural Center of the Philippines and the National Commission on Culture and the Arts:
Nominations are then submitted to the National Artist Secretariat that is created by the National Artist Award Committee; experts from the different art fields then sit on a First Deliberation to prepare the short list of nominees. A Second Deliberation, which is a joint meeting of the Commissioners of the NCCA and the Board of Trustees of the CCP, decides on the final nominees. The list is then forwarded to the President of the Philippines, who, by Presidential Proclamation, proclaims the final nominees as members of the Order of National Artists.
|1972||Fernando C. Amorsolo||Visual Arts - Painting||posthumous conferment|
|1973||Francisca Reyes Aquino||Dance|
|Carlos "Botong" V. Francisco||Visual Arts - Painting||posthumous conferment|
|Amado V. Hernandez||Literature|
|Antonio J. Molina||Music|
|Guillermo E. Tolentino||Visual Arts - Sculpture|
|Jose Garcia Villa||Literature|
|1976||Napoleón V. Abueva||Visual Arts - Sculpture|
|Lamberto V. Avellana||Film and Theater|
|Victorio C. Edades||Visual Arts - Painting|
|Pablo Antonio||Architecture||posthumous conferment|
|1981||Vicente S. Manansala||Visual Arts - Painting|
|1982||Gerardo de León||Film|
|Carlos P. Rómulo||Literature|
|1987||Honorata "Atang" de la Rama||Theater and Music|
|1988||Antonino R. Buenaventura||Music|
|Lucrecia Reyes Úrtula||Dance|
|1989||Lucrecia R. Kasilag||Music|
|César Legaspi||Visual Arts - Painting|
|Leandro V. Locsin||Architecture|
|1991||Hernándo R. Ocampo||Visual Arts - Painting|
|Lucio D. San Pedro||Music|
|1997||Lino Brocka||Film||posthumous conferment|
|Felipe P. de León||Music|
|Wilfrido Ma. Guerrero||Theater|
|Rolando S. Tínio||Theater and Literature|
|N. V. M. González||Literature|
|Levi Celério||Music & Literature|
|Arturo R. Luz||Visual Arts - Painting|
|Carlos Quirino||Historical Literature|
|1999||J. Navarro Elizalde||Visual Arts - Painting||posthumous conferment|
|Ernani Joson Cuenco||Music|
|Andrea O. Veneración|
|Edith L. Tiempo||Literature|
|2001||Ishmael Bernál||Film||posthumous conferment|
|F. Sioníl José||Literature|
|Ang Kiukok||Visual Arts - Painting|
|2003||José T. Joya||posthumous conferment|
|Virgilio S. Almario||Literature|
|Alejándro R. Roces|
|Eddie S. Romero||Film and Broadcast Arts|
|Salvador F. Bernál||Theater and Design|
|2006||BenCab||Visual Arts - Painting|
|Abdulmari Asia Imao||Visual Arts - Sculpture|
|I.P. Santos||Architecture - Landscape|
|Fernando Poe, Jr.||Film||posthumous conferment|
|Ramón Valera||Architecture, Design and Allied Arts - Fashion Design|
|2009*||Manuel Conde||Film and Broadcast Arts||posthumous conferment|
|Federico Aguilar Alcuáz||Visual Arts - Painting, Sculpture and Mixed Media|
|Francisco Coching||Visual Arts||posthumous conferment|
|Cirilo F. Bautista||Literature|
|José María Zaragoza||Architecture||posthumous conferment|
Over the years there have been several controversies involving the awarding of National Artist or involving awardees.
In August 2009, the conferment of the Order of National Artists on seven individuals by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo became controversial when it was revealed that musician Ramon Santos had been dropped from the list of nominees short-listed in May that year by the selection committee, and that four other individuals had been nominated via "President’s prerogative": Cecilla Guidote-Alvarez (Theater), Magno José "Carlo” Caparás (Visual Arts and Film), Francisco Mañosa (Architecture), and José “Pitoy” Moreno (Fashion Design).
Members of the Philippine art community–including a number of living members of the Order–protested that the proclamation politicised the title of National Artist, and made it "a way for President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to accommodate her allies." Specific protests were raised regarding the nomination of Guidote-Alvarez, who was also Executive Director of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, because it was purportedly a breach of protocol and delicadeza (propriety), and of Caparás, on the grounds that he was unqualified for nomination under both the Visual Arts and the Film categories. On July 16, 2013, the controversy finally ended after the Supreme Court of the Philippines voted 12-1-2 that voided the four proclamations.