Art/Style/Travel DiariesVideo

Joya from Kapitan Geny Lopez estate leads ACC Auction 2024

On its 9th year partnership, Leon Gallery and Asian Cultural Council present masterpieces from significant collections

From the Eugenio 'Geny' Lopez, Jr. collection, Jose Joya (1931-1995), 'Yellow Abode,' 1961, oil on canvas, 32" x 32" (81 cm x 81 cm)

At presscon of Leon Gallery’s 2024 ACC Auction, officers of ACC headed by Ernest Escaler (center), Maribel Ongpin (center), Malu Gamboa Lindo (far left), Tess Rances (3rd from right), Leon Gallery Director Jaime Ponce de Leon (far right) with ACC grantees Japhet Mari Cabling (2nd from left) for choreography and art education, Maria Christine Muyco (3rd from left) for ethnomusicology, Corinne de San Jose for film sound design

Anita Magsaysay-Ho (1914-2012), ‘Planting Rice,’ 1990, oil on canvas, 36″ x 30″ (91 cm x 76 cm)

Roberto Chabet (1937-2013), ‘Window,’ 1965 (verso), oil and acrylic on canvas, 36″ x 36″ (91 cm x 91 cm)

Leon Gallery’s The Asian Cultural Council Auction 2024 is set for March 9, 2024, 2 p.m., G/F Eurovilla 1, Rufino corner Legazpi Streets, Legazpi Village, Makati City.

On the ninth year of its partnership with the Asian Cultural Council, León Gallery offers on the block Philippine masterpieces from priceless, memorable collections of renowned Filipinos led by the captain of Philippine industry, Eugenio “Geny” Lopez, Jr.

From the estate of “Kapitan” Geny Lopez (“Kapitan,” as he was respectfully referred to in Philippine business and industry) comes Jose Joya’s Yellow Abode (1961), an oil on canvas done in Dean Joya’s prolific era when he received the Republic Cultural Heritage Award, a precursor of the National Artist Award he would be granted posthumously in 2003. It was also in the ’60s when Joya began the mentorship of many Filipino artists who would themselves be stalwarts in Philippine visual arts. Significantly, Joya was the first Filipino grantee of the Asian Cultural Council in visual arts.

Joya was considered the champion of abstract expressionism in the country. The Lopezes, from the war years to the contemporary Philippines, have been known as the leading patrons of Philippine art and culture, as proved by the family’s priceless collection of Philippine art, historic books, literature and memorabilia housed at the Lopez Museum. Kapitan Geny Lopez continued, with fervor, this patronage started by his grandfather Benito and father Don Eugenio Lopez, Sr.

Yellow Abode is described in the Auction publication: “….characterized by turbulent dynamic strokes and rich slabs of impastos…. The piece was among the works included in a Christmas group exhibition at the Luz Gallery that formed part of the first anniversary celebrations of Arturo Luz’s brainchild…”

The Leon Gallery publication continues: “….Joya depicts not the physicality of the titular ‘abode’ but its essence. It is an ‘abode’ in the spiritual sense in which solid swathes of yellows, the imperial color of prosperity in oriental culture, signify an ending source of power. As ‘abode’ is defined as a place of dwelling from a denotational viewpoint, Joya’s Yellow Abode sublimely expresses a place of dynamic contemplation; a reinvigorating haven for rest and calm; a return to his oriental roots.”

Leon Gallery director Jaime Ponce de Leon says of this milestone auction set for March 9, 2024,  “There is much to be grateful for and many milestones to remember with our first major auction of the year—the much-awaited Asian Cultural Council Auction of 2024….The Asian Cultural Council Auction is always an occasion close to our hearts, not least of all because it brings to the forefront the abilities of our young Filipino artists. In the ACC’s honor, works by Jose Joya, their first-ever grantee for the visual arts, are among the highlights, as are important pieces from another ACC grantee, Roberto Chabet.”

The works of Jose Joya and Roberto Chabet, the first Filipino recipients of ACC grants in their respective fields—Joya for the Visual Arts and Chabet for Museology, both in 1967—are the centerpieces of this auction.

ACC Philippines chairman Ernest L. Escaler says that León Gallery and the Asian Cultural Council have, for the past nine years, produced nothing short of a fruitful and “wonderful partnership.”

“Filled with gratitude for the year that was, we recommence with greater optimism to move forward building a legacy that espouses the transformative power of the arts,” Escaler says.

“As we aim to actualize ACC’s mission year after year, we seek the support of like-minded individuals and form alliances along the way to support our advocacy.

“Foremost is our wonderful partnership with Jaime Ponce de Leon and Leon Gallery. Now on our 9th year of collaboration, we extend our deep admiration, respect, and sincere thanks to Jaime and his team for their dedication and tireless effort that makes our fundraising auction an anticipated and successful event,” Escaler concludes.

Fernando Zóbel (1924-1984), ‘El Rió V,’ 1978, oil on canvas, 40″ x 40″ (102 cm x 102 cm)

Nena Saguil (1914-1994), ‘Still Life No. 2,’ 195, oil on masonite board, 17 1/2″ x 23 3/4″ (44 cm x 60 cm)

Nena Saguil (1914-1994), ‘Sans Titre’ (Untitled), 1959, oil on canvas, 31 1/2″ x 38 1/2″ (80 cm x 98 cm)

The 2024 auction celebrates the birth anniversaries of three of the Philippines’ modernist stalwarts: Fernando Zóbel’s 100th and the 110th of two of his closest friends, Anita Magsaysay-Ho and Nena Saguil. Anita is represented by a rare rendition of the iconic Planting Rice, while Saguil’s works represent her prolific career, that started at the Philippine Art Gallery and on to her art-defining experience as painter of the École de Paris.

Félix Resurrección Hidalgo (1855-1913), ‘Barcos de la Vela (Sailboats),’ 1908, oil on canvas, 24″ x 37″ (61 cm x 94 cm)

From the Ambassador Pedro Conlu Hernaez collection, Juan Luna y Novicio (1857-1899), ‘Landscape in Bilbao,’ ca. 1893, oil on wood, 12″ x 17″ (30 cm x 43 cm)

Juan Luna y Novicio (1857-1899), ‘Ecce Homo’ (‘Behold the Man’) or ‘El Cristo de la Paciencia’ (‘The Christ of Patience’),  ca. 1896-1897, oil on canvas, 43″ x 27″ (109 cm x 69 cm)

From the Don Jorge B. Vargas collection,  Juan Luna y Novicio (1857-1899), ‘Idilio’ (Idyll), ca. 1880s, oil on canvas, 28 1/2″ x 15″ (72 cm x 38 cm)

The “sun and moon” of Filipino art, Juan Luna and Félix Resurrección Hidalgo, are also represented in this sale. Luna has three works that span important periods in his life: Landscape in Bilbao, Ecce Homo, and a lyrical work from his award-winning Roman period, titled Idilio.

Included are pieces from the important collections of Romeo Jorge and Assemblyman and Ambassador Pedro Conlu Hernaez.

A portion of the proceeds from this annual auction will help fund various ACC grants for Filipino and other Asian artists and arts-based practitioners.

The grants are meant to help Filipino and Asian artists spread their creative wings beyond their artistic horizons on to uncharted shores.

Formerly from the Romeo Jorge collection,  ‘San Miguel Arcangel,’ 17th century, Binondo, Manila, ivory, silver, and gold, ivory santo: H: 19″ (48 cm) L: 3 1/2″ (9 cm) W: 13″ (33 cm), sword: 18k gold, 36 grams, virina: H: 35″ (89 cm) L: 15″ (38 cm) W: 23″ (58 cm), silver base: H: 4 3/4″ (12 cm) L: 8″ (20 cm) W: 11 1/2″ (29 cm)

Sign up for our Newsletter

Sign up for’s Weekly Digest and get the best of, tailored for you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *