Search Results for: fabian de la rosa

Fabián De La Rosa and His Times

Part one of a 14 minute video, produced by, in cooperation with the UP Vargas Museum, which traces the life and career of the internationally-acclaimed 20th century Filipino master Fabián De La Rosa. De La Rosa’s rightful place in Philippine art history has often been obscured by his more illustrious predecessors, Juan Luna and Felix Resurreccion Hidalgo, and his famous protégé and nephew, Fernando Amorsolo.


Buying Fabian De La Rosa paintings – Highest Prices Paid:  Artist Bio & images follow:



Artist Fabian Cueto De La Rosa was born in Manila on the 5th of May, 1869. He was the second child of Marcos de la Rosa and Gregoria Cueto. Among his relatives were Simon Flores y De La Rosa ( an uncle) and his nephews later included Fernando and Pablo Amorsolo. De La Rosa later served as a mentor to Fernando Amorsolor, encouraging him to pursue painting.

He received his first art lessons were given by an aunt, Mariana De La Rosa, at the age of 10. He later enrolled at the Escuela de Bellas Artes y Dibujo under Agustin Saez, but dropped out after three years. In 1893 he enrolled in the Escuela Superior de Pintura, directed by Don Lorenzo Rocha. Later, he also took painting lessons from Lorenzo Guerrero and Miguel Zaragoza.

He was married, on January 13th 1900, to Gorgonia Tolentino. The couple never bore children, but their orphaned nephews Pablo and Amorsolo were very close to them, and stayed with them in 1903.

In 1908 the Germinal Cigar Factory sent him to Europe as a scholar. The schools he attended included the Academie Julien in Paris. Upon his return to Manila, along with other artists who had studied with him in Europe, he became one of the first faculty members of the University of the Philippines (UP) School of Fine Arts. He introduced and taught decorative painting at the University. He also painted portraits to support himself.

During the period of 1927 through 1937, he served as the school’s director. In 1928, taking leave from his directorship, he sailed to Europe for the second time accompanied by his wife. He painted in Paris for four months and then traveled to Munich, Geneva, Rome, and Madrid. In 1928 he presented a much acclaimed exhibition of his paintings at the Ateneo de Madrid.

Fabian De La Rosa is reputed to have produced about 1,000 works in his lifetime. Aurelio S. Alvero divides his works into three periods. In the first period, De la Rosa’s emphasis is academic, detailing figures while paying little attention to atmosphere. Notable works from this period include “Transplanting Rice,” which won De La Rosa the gold medal at the International Exposition held in St. Louis, Missouri in 1904, and also “The Death of General Lawton,” which won a bronze medal in the same exposition.

The second period, which includes works De La Rosa executed in Europe, shows a transition from academic figures to atmospheric effects. Examples from this period include “El Kindiman,” 1930, and “Markina Road,” circa 1939.

In his third period, De la Rosa emphasizes the play of colors in favor over mass and space. Typical of this period is the painting “Fishermen’s Huts on Balut Island,” Tondo, considered by Aurelio Alvero to be De La Rosa’s finest landscape painting.

Other notable paintings by De la Rosa include “Landscape with Dark Trees, 1927,” “La pintura,” 1926, “La Bordadora,”

(The Embroiderer) circa 1926. He also executed a “View of Santa Ana” dated December, 1937. His wife Gorgonio died of cancer in 1937, and the artist was left living alone, suffering from kidney disease. He died on December 15, 1938 at the Kraut Apartments in Quiapo, Manila.

De la Rosa received posthumously the Patnubay ng Sining at Kalinagan award from the City of Manila in 1968.


Signature of Artist Fabian Cueto De La Rosa


Buying Nena Saguil paintings – Highest Prices Paid:  Artist Bio & images follow:


a.k.a. Nena Saguil (b. Manila, September 19, 1914, d. Paris, February 1994)

Nena Saguill, a pioneering Philippine modern artist remembered as a feminist, a mystic and a recluse, was one of ten children of Epifanio Saguil and Remedios Laconico. Saguil later spoke of having been a lonely child at a crowded dinner table. Her father Don Epifanio Saguil was a medical doctor who served as the personal physician of the Philippine President Manuel L. Quezon. Later in life Saguil claimed to have been born in 1924, but research has confirmed that she was born in 1914.

Not wanting to attend Catholic school, as her conservative parents wished her to, Saguil studied art at the University of the Philippines School of Fine Arts where artist Anita Magsaysay was a classmate. Saguil was awarded a certificate in painting in 1933. The school was then considered a bastion of conservatism in art, and Saguil later told a friend what she thought of some of the instructors there: Fernando Amorosolo was a very commercial artist and Fabian De La Rosa was not a very good painter.

After the disruptions of World War II Saguil was able to complete her studies at the University of the Philippines, where she found herself connected with Hernando Ocampo and his many artist friends. During this period Saguil became increasingly interested in modern art was attracted to the work of Pablo Picasso. She completed her Bachelors Degree in 1949, earning an Award of Excellence. Her works of this period include a satirical self portrait entitled Vanity, and number of floral still lifes painted with a light, Impressionist touch.

Around 1950 Saguil became active in the newly formed Philippine Art Gallery (P.A.G.) run by Lyd Arguilla. Because her parents owned some property that provided her with income Saguil did not have to work and was able to devote time to her art. In the afternoons she served as a volunteer, watching over the P.A.G. Gallery. Through her connection to the P.A.G. Saguil exhibited with and became associated with other notable Philippine early modernists including Vicente Manansala, Romeo Tabuena, Fernando Zobel, Arturo Luz, Hernando R. Ocampo and Anita Magsaysay-Ho.

Saguil paintings of the 1950s include Cubist renditions of traditional Philippine subject matter, such as rice planting, as well as more rebellious Surrealist works. Her 1953 oil Power Room, in the Paulino and Hetty Que Collection, features a toilet-headed figure wielding a plunger and a whip in a tiled bathroom setting embellished with coils of human waste.

In 1954, at the age of forty, a Walter Damrosch Scholarship allowed Saguil to move to Spain, where she studied abstract painting. Another scholarship, from the Instituto de Cultura Hispania allowed her to further her studies. In 1956 Saguil moved to Paris to further her studies at the Ecole des Artes Americane. The following year Saguil had a solo show at Galerie Raymond Creuze in Paris, where she exhibited works with linear and geometric elements. She later experimented with a syringe technique similar to that of Fernando Zobel and Lee Aguinaldo, painting delicate loops and spatters on softly brushed grounds. Saguil also sold a few Paris scenes in a style similar to that of Raoul Dufy to earn extra cash.

Saguil, now isolated from the Philippine art scene, lived in solitude in a dingy apartment in the Saint Germain des Pres district, sometimes working as a maid to support herself. She had lived and worked in Paris for over a decade before coming back to Manila for a retrospective exhibition at the new Solidaridad Galleries in 1968, bringing over 200 works with her. By the end of her career she had also taken part in exhibitions in Germany, Italy, England, Switzerland, Sweden, Turkey, and the United States.

Nena Saguils mature abstract works are often described as cosmos and many contain spheres, fibers, dots, vortices and bubbles. Her imagery has also been characterized as cellular, and some of her forms appear as if seen through a microscope. Saguil was a Jehovahs Witness in her later decades, and her work often contains a sense of spirituality and religious feeling.

After her death in 1994 Saguil was the subject of a September 1995 memorial exhibition at the at the Lopez Museum which was followed by a major exhibit at the Cultural Center of the Philippines in 1997. In 2003, Nena Saguil, Landscapes and Inscapes, from the Material World to the Spiritual was presented at the Ateneo Art Gallery, accompanied by a catalog written by Emmanuel (Eric) Torres. In 2006 Philippine President Arroyo posthumously awarded Saguil a Presidential Medal of Merit.


Buying Juan Marcos de Guzmán Arellano paintings – Highest Prices Paid:  Artist Bio & images follow:


Juan Marcos de Guzmán Arellano was a Filipino architect and painter, best known as the architect of Manila’s Metropolitan Theater, the Manila Post Office Building, Jones Bridge and the development of Quezon City.

Born into a cultured, artistic family, Juan attended the Ateneo Municipal and graduated in 1908. His first interest was reportedly painting and he trained under Lorenzo Guerrero, the “Ermita Master,” Toribio Antillon, and Fabian de la Rosa. Arellano went to the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1911 and then transferred to Drexel to finish his bachelor’s degree in Architecture. He was trained in the Beaux Arts and subsequently went to work for George B. Post & Sons in New York City, where he met and collaborated with Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr.

Returning to the Philippines, he opened an architectural practice with his brother, Arcadio.

After his retirement in 1956, he returned to painting, and had a solo show at the Manila YMCA in 1960, exhibiting over 300 paintings.


Buying Miguel Zaragoza paintings – Highest Prices Paid:  Artist Bio & images follow:

MIGUEL ZARAGOZA (Filipino/Spanish, 1847-1923).

Miguel Zaragoza was a painter, writer and teacher who was contemporary of Don Fabian de la Rosa, Don Rafael Enriquez and Toribio Herrera. In his youth, Zaragoza was a student of the Manila Academy who was sent for further education in Madrid as a “pensionado.”

Considered an early Philippine Master, he was known mainly for his portraits and also for the illustrations he published in La Ilustracion Filipina. His works gained recognition in the 19th century, but not on the level of Juan Luna who was also his contemporary. He must have felt a sense of competition with Luna about whom he once said “Fame fattened his billfold.”

One early review, mentioning both Zaragoza’s portraits and landscapes has the following to say:

“Miguel Zaragoza is preferred by many art lovers as a portrait painter. But his landscapes have a sombre mood and style of their own. His two in the gallery show the Zaragoza play of purple and green and the peculiar Zaragoza push-brush technique.”

Felix Roxas had this to say about Zaragoza:

“Miguel Zaragoza was equally skillful with the pen and the brush, handling them with the delicacy of art studied in Rome.”

Zaragoza was also a critic and taught art and anatomy at the University of the Philippines.


Buying Ireneo Miranda paintings – Highest Prices Paid:  Artist Bio & images follow:

IRENEO L. MIRANDA (Filipino, 1896-1964).

Ireneo Miranda was born in San Fernando, Pampanga, the Philippines. He graduated from the U.P. School of the Arts in 1916, and then designed labels and advertisements for the Pacific Commercial Company. Miranda later became a faculty member there under Fabian de la Rosa.

Known as a watercolorist, illustrator and cartoonist, he was at one time called the “Dean of Philippine Cartoonists.” A 1930 catalog of the University of the Philippines lists Ireneo Miranda as an ” Assistant Instructor in Illustration, Cartooning and Commercial Designing, and Elementary Decorative Painting.”

A contemporary of Fernando C. Amoroslo, Miranda’s illustrations appeared in the periodicals Liwaysay and El Debate.

One of his paintings “Maguindanao Princess” depicts a Muslim Philippine woman in colorful attire. This image appears in the book “Portfolio of 60 Philippine Art Masterpieces” published in 1986.


Buying Anita Magsaysay-Ho paintings – Highest Prices Paid:  Artist Bio & images follow:

ANITA CORPUS MAGSAYSAY-HO (Philippine, b. May 25, 1914, d. May 5, 2012)

aka Anita Magsaysay, Anita Magsaysay Ho

Styles: Philippine Modern, Neo-Realism

Subjects: Philippine genre scenes, landscapes, harvest and market scenes, female nudes

Anita Magsaysay-Ho is a Philippine painter, considered by many to be one of the most important and gifted Philippine modernists. In 1958, a panel of experts assembled by the Manila Chronicle named her one of the 6 most outstanding painters in Philippine history.  Magsaysay-Ho’s best known canvases, which often have both realist and stylized aspects, celebrate the beauty of Philippine women engaged in everyday tasks.

Magsaysay-Ho was born in Manila in May, 1914, the daughter of Ambrosio Magsaysay, an engineer, and Armilla Corpus. Anita’s first cousin, Ramon Magsaysay, served as President of the Philippines from December of 1953 until his death in a 1957 plane crash. Beginning her studies at the University of the Philippines School of Fine Arts at the age of 13 — accompanied by a nanny — she studied with Fabian de la Rosa, Vicente Rivera y Mir and also Fernando and Pablo Amorsolo. Fernando Amorsolo was her landscape teacher, while Pablo Amorsolo taught her drawing.

She also received private tutoring from the noted cartoonist Ireneo Miranda. She recieved additional instruction at the UP’s School of Design where her instructors included Victorio Edades and Enrique Ruiz, and at the “Atelier of Modern Art” founded by Edades.

In the 1930s Anita Magsaysay travelled to the United States where she continued her studies at the Cranbrook Academy in Michigan. Anita also took courses in oil painting, and drawing at the Art Student’s League in New York City. While in New York, Anita met her future husband, Robert Ho, who was also a student. After their marriage, he bought postwar ships in the United States and brought them to China where he established a shipping business: Magsaysay Inc. Because of her husband’s work, the Hos and moved frequently, living in Brazil, Canada, Hong Kong and Japan. Anita, who has moved over 40 times in her lifetime, was soon raising 5 children. Anita was painting whenever possible, and always had a home studio where her children would sketch, play the piano and listen to music while she painted.

During the early 1940s Magsaysay – Ho’s works showed the influence of Fernando Amorsolo both in their subject matter and their luminosity. Gradually, her paintings evolved towards modernism as they moved towards cubist distortion and evolved stylized visual rhythms. She was included on a list of “Thirteen Moderns” compiled by artist Victor Edades, and was at one point known as the “female Amorsolo.”

In the 1950s Magsaysay-Ho exhibited at the important Philippine Art Gallery (PAG) which brought her public attention and acclaim. Her work was grouped with that of other Neo-Realists including Lydia Arguilla and Nena Saguil. Anita’s paintings of this period featured women at work: harvesting fruit, gathering and sheaving grain, or selling fish in the marketplace. Her works were formally activated by bold brushwork and strong contrasts of dark and light tones.

 In the 1960s the space of Magsaysay-Ho’s paintings opened up and the resulting images were more relaxed, with clearly articulated and separated figures. The lines in her work softened, and her modeling became more consistent. These paintings have the feeling of being choreographed, and are very graceful in their effect.

In the 1970s Magsaysay-Ho explored a new style influenced by Chinese calligraphy. Her paintings were often decorated with delicately controlled ink blots that suggested rock formations, vegetation or waves. At their best, they balanced human gestures with the calligraphic interest provided by the ink blots.  

In the late 1980’s the artist had a “Green Period.”  Green-hued fruit and vegetables mingle with female figures that seem to resemble plants or fruits themselves. The women in these paintings feature oval faces with high cheekbones and narrow eyes. Another series that followed the green paintings featured half figures surrounded by baskets, fruit and birds. These figures are solid and highly refined, rendered in an Asian palette that counter-balanced stark contrasts between colors such as burnt sienna and yellow-green.

In her nineties Magsaysay-Ho became the subject of a biography by Alfredo Roces, “In Praise of Women,” published in 2005. She states, in the text; “In my works I always celebrate the women of the Philippines. I regard them with deep admiration and they continue to inspire me—their movements and gestures, their expressions of happiness and frustration; their diligence and shortcomings; their joy of living. I know very well the strength, hard work and quiet dignity of Philippine women, for I am one of them.”

After suffering a stroke in 2009 Magsaysay-Ho stopped talking. One day, regaining her speech, she called her husband and told him “Robert, you are the only man I ever loved in my life.”

2nd Prize: The Manila Grand Opera House Exhibition, 1950, for “Five Senses”
1st Prize: The Philippine Art Association (PAG), 1952, for “The Cooks”
2nd Prize: The Philippine Art Association (PAG), 1953, for “Fruit Vendors”
1st Prize: The Philippine Art Association (PAG), 1959, for “Mending the Nets”
1st Prize: The Philippine Art Association (PAG), 1960, for “Two Women”
2nd Prize: The Philippine Art Association (PAG), 1962, for “Trio”


The Ateneo Art Museum, Ateneo de Manila University, The Philippines
The Lopez Memorial Museum and Library, Pasig City, The Philippines
The Metropolitan Museum of Manila, The Philippines
The Yuchengo Museum, Makati City, The Philippines

Artist Anita Magsaysay-Ho's signature

Artist Anita Magsaysay-Ho’s signature


Buying Lorenzo Guerrero paintings – Highest Prices Paid:  Artist Bio & images follow:


(b. Ermita, Manila, November 4, 1835 d, April 8, 1904)

Painter Lorenzo L. Guerrero was one of the fourteen children of of Leon Jorge Guerrero and Clara Leogardo. His father, Leon was a warehouse keeper who worked for the Spanish government.

Belonging to a well known ilustrado family of writers, artists, and scientists, he had early exposure to the arts. He studied at the Academia de Dibujo y Pintura under the Spanish art teachers Cortina and Valdes, and later Saez, In 1858 he became assistant at the Academia located on Cabildo st, Intramuros, ca 1858. Aside from teaching painting in the homes of prominent Manila families, he also gave lessons in drawing at the Colegio de Santa Isabel, La Concordia, and Instituto de Mujeres. Among his pupils were Juan Arellano and Juan Luna whom he advised to pursue studies abroad as the Academia had nothing more to teach them.

He married Clemencia Ramirez, one of his artistically gifted students. They had nine children only three of whom survived to adulthood. Two of the children, Fernando Ma. Guerrero and Manuel Guerrero became writers.

As an art teacher, Guerrero’s influence was considerable. His house was the scene of many tertulias which welcomed such scholarly and artistic personalities as Fabian de la Rosa, Vicente Rivera y Mir, and Toribio Antillon. Epifanio de Los Santos Cristobal described him as “a most appreciative critic of the literary and musical arts.” In addition to painting, Guerrero also wrote verses and lyrics for songs.

Working in the transition period from the religious to the secular, he did paintings on religious subjects, as well as landscapes and genre. Among his religious works are “Santa Filomena,” (St Filomena), “San Juan Bautista” (St John the Baptist) and “Nuestra Senora de Guia” (Our Lady of Guidance) for the Ermita Church.

Other religious paintings are “Dolorosa” (Soulful Mother), “Santa Veronica de Julianus” (St Veronica of Julianus), “San Felix de Cantalicio” (St Felix of Cantalicio), and “La transverberacion, de Santa Teresa de Jesus” (The Transfixion of St Therese of Jesus) which won the gold medal in the tercentenary celebration of Santa Teresa de Jesus in 1882.

His secular works include a series depicting weather including “The Fire,” “The Flood,” and “The Storm.” He also painted localized genre scenes including “Taking Water,” “Cockfighting,” “The Chinese Vendor of Tsin Tsao,” “River’s Bend,” and “Scene at a Brook.” The latter three were exhibited at the St. Louis Exposition of 1904.


Other landscape paintings included “Chorillo de Mariquina” (Water well in Marikina), and “Mariquina Landscape.” Of his genre paintings “Vistiendo la Novia,” (Dressing the Bride) is considered his most outstanding.

Guerrero died of acute asthma on April 8th, 1904. His remains are buried at Ermita Church, which he had designed and decorated when it was rebuilt in 1885.


Buying Pablo Amorsolo paintings – Highest Prices Paid:  Artist Bio & images follow:

PABLO CUETO AMORSOLO (b. Daet, Camarines Norte, June 26, 1898 d. Antipolo, Rall, 1945) 

Pablo Amorsolo was the son of Pedro Amorsolo and Bonifacio Cueto. When he was eight, his family went to Manila where he studied drawing under his uncle, Fabian de la Rosa. He completed elementary and secondary school at the Liceo de Manila, and graduated from the University of the Philippines (UP) School of Fine Arts in 1924.

Two Years later he was appointed assistant instructor in the school where he taught until World War II broke out.

An admirer of classical art, Amorsolo was also a strong advocate of modern art. In the 1930s he was a prolific illustrator who created editorial illustrations in pen and ink for such publications as the Graphic, Tribune, La Vanguardia, the Herald, and others, He also served as artist for the Manila Times His illustrations, which portrayed a wide variety of domestic and social situations, contributed to the rise of genre art in the Philippines.

When portraits were in vogue during the prewar years, Amorsolo was one of the best portrait painters. His skilled brushwork could breathe life into his subjects, which he painted truthfully and without idealization. He painted subjects from all social classes and age levels; it was in these portraits that he showed his deep understanding of individuals.

Historical subjects also interested him, as evidenced by his painting “Magellan and the Natives” and in his large-scale masterpiece “The Discovery of the Philippines,” painted in 1944.

Few of Pablo Armsolo’s paintings are extant because a large number of his works were destroyed in a fire in 1945. He served as a colonel in the Kempetai. When the Americans returned he was captured by Philippine troops and was executed by a guerilla firing squad in Antipolo.


Buying Fernando Amorsolo paintings – Highest Prices Paid:  Artist Bio & images follow:

FERNANDO CUETO AMORSOLO (Philippine, b. May 30, 1892 – d. February 26, 1972)

Styles: Impressionism, Luminism, Realism

Subjects: Philippine genre and historical, nudes, society portraits

The paintings of Fernando C. Amorsolo “…overflow with sweetness and optimism,” says art historian Eric Torres. Amorsolo, Torres asserts, managed to “capture on canvas the vibrant tropical Philippine sunlight.” A shy man, whose only real genius was in painting, Fernando Amorsolo also helped shape and stylize the image of the ideal Filipina.

Fernando Amorsolo’s enormous popularity, both during his lifetime and after, resulted from his luminous and idealized treatment of Philippine genre and landscape subjects. His best-known paintings feature peasants in colorful costumes, scenes of rice planting and harvesting, genre and society portraits, and sensual female bathers. Amorsolo’s painterly technique, and his skill in rendering the figure, is said to have peaked during the era known as his “Golden Period” between 1915 and 1940.

Fernando Amorsolo was born on May 30, 1892 in Paco, Manila to Pedro Amorsolo, a bookkeeper, and his wife Bonifacia Cueto. One of five brothers, Fernando grew up in Daet, Camarines Norte, until moving to Manila upon the death of his father. Before he passed away, Amorsolo’s father Pedro had made his wife promise to give Fernando a proper art education.

The family moved in with his mother’s first cousin, Fabian de la Rosa, a genre painter who had been trained at Manila’s Escuela de Bellas Artes y Dibujo (School of Fine Arts and Design) and who had also traveled in Europe. In 1905 Fernando Amorsolo, aged 13, was apprenticed to de la Rosa. The young man’s first commercial success came when he sold watercolor postcards for 10 centavos each.

In 1908, Amorsolo won the second prize for the painting Levendo Periodico at the Bazar Escolta, a competition sponsored by the Asociacion Internacional de Artistas. The following year, Amorsolo enrolled at the Art School of the Liceo de Manila where a genre scene of figures in a garden would earn him a first prize in his graduation year. In 1909 he began attending the University of the Philippines School of Fine art, where his uncle Fabian de la Rosa was serving as an instructor. During his university years Amorsolo supported himself by doing illustration work that appeared in novels and religious publications. He graduated with honors in 1916 and began a dual career as an art instructor and commercial artist.

In 1916 Enrique Zobel de Ayala, a Spanish citizen who was a leading businessman in the Philippines, sponsored Amorsolo to study at the Adademia de San Fernando in Madrid. While in Spain, Amorsolo became widely exposed to the works of key European modern artists including French Realists, Impressionists and Post-Impressionists. He also discovered the works of the Spanish luminist Joaquín Sorolla y Bastida, and the great Baroque master Diego Velasquez, who became the artists he most greatly admired and emulated. The 7 months that Amorsolo spent in Spain, and the brief visit he made afterwards to New York, gave him the stylistic tools he needed to transform himself from a provincial artist to an international figure. “Informed by Western Impressionism,” states art historian Floriana Capistrano-Baker, “Amorsolo used swift, broken brushwork and thick impasto, with emphasis on landscapes and daily scenes.”

After returning to Manila, Amorsolo set up a studio and began an enormously productive period. Using subject matter that he had borrowed from Fabian de la Rosa – scenes of rice planting and harvesting — he created a series of paintings that captured the popular imagination. His 1922 painting Rice Planting soon appeared on calendars, posters, and travel brochures. Amorsolo also created powerful images of Philippine colonial history including “The First Mass in the Philippines.” During the long span of his career, Amorsolo’s paintings would continue to be reproduced in textbooks, commercial images, magazines and newspapers, and became the accepted standard for historical imagery.


A rice harvesting scene by Fernando Amorsolo

A rice harvesting scene by Fernando Amorsolo

Commercially successful from his thirties on, Amorsolo was the subject of international exhibitions including a one-man show in New York City held in 1925. He was very much in demand for portraits of society figures, including foreigners, and was willing to make copies of his own works, always slightly altered, on a commissioned basis. He would sometimes bring out a photo album of his better-known paintings and ask a client which subject matter they would like.

Amorsolo continued to teach at the University of the Philippines, and served as the Director of the school’s Art Department between 1938 and 1952. After the 1931 death of his first wife – with whom he had six children – he remarried and fathered eight more children. In total, five of his children also became painters.

During the Japanese occupation of the Philippines Amorsolo sketched war scenes from the window or roof of his rented apartment, while his wife and family lived separately in a safer location. His drawings and paintings from this grim period document wartime suffering and atrocities. In particular, Amorsolo depicted the sufferings of mothers and children. During the war, Amorsolo’s younger brother Pablo, also an accomplished artist was branded a Japanese sympathizer and was executed by Filipino guerillas. His wartime paintings are considered among his finest work and were exhibited at Malacanang Palace in 1948.


A 1954 Amorsolo oil painting depicts Philippine village life.

A 1954 Amorsolo oil painting depicts Philippine village life.

From the 1950s onward, Amorsolo created an average of 10 paintings per month. His popularity was so great that the first generation of Philippine modernists generally cited his work as an academy that needed to be rebelled against. In a sense, this was a kind of compliment to the aging artist.

In Amorsolo’s waning years health problems, including diabetes and cataracts, created obstacles, but he continued to paint productively to support his large family. The deaths of two of his sons, Fernando Jr. in 1964, and Milo in 1971, affected him deeply. Fernando Amorsolo died of heart failure on August 24, 1972.

In 2003, Amorsolo’s children founded the Fernando C. Amorsolo Art Foundation, which is dedicated to preserving Fernando Amorsolo’s legacy, promoting his style and vision, and preserving a national heritage through the conservation and promotion of his works.

Museums and Public Collections:

The Ayala Museum, Manila
The Central Bank of the Philippines, Manila
The Lopez Museum, Manila
The National Museum of the Philippines, Manila


“100 Years of Philippine Painting,” Essay by Emmanuel Torres, copyright the Pacific Asia Museum, 1984
Fernando C. Amorsolo Art Foundation, 39 Cordillera St. Quezon City, The Philippines
Biography by Edwin A. Martinez,
“Pioneers of Philippine Art,” Essay by Floriana H. Capistrano-Baker, copyright the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, 2006


Artist Fernando Amorsolo's Signature

Artist Fernando Amorsolo’s Signature