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Monday, July 11, 2011

Environment

Little-known Rizal stories revealed in Ateneo Art Gallery exhibit
July 7, 2011, 1:43pm

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MANILA, Philippines — There is something inside,” Philippine national hero Jose Rizal whispered in English to his sister Trinidad as he handed her the alcohol burner. Tucked inside it was a folded piece of paper containing a handwritten poem by Rizal, untitled and unsigned. Years later, it was given the title Mi Ultimo Adios— Rizal’s well-known poem that never fails to touch Filipinos’ hearts. That poem is one of many writings which demonstrate his love for freedom. In another instance, when Spaniard Antonio de Morga wrote Sucesos de las Islas Filipinas, his account of Philippine history, Jose Rizal republished the book, this time with annotations that showed how the Philippines was actually an advanced civilization even before Spanish conquest. Aside from writing, Rizal is also a talented artist, as shown by the statuette of the Sacred Heart which he carved during his student days in 1875 in the Ateneo. Made from batikuling wood, the statuette stayed in the Ateneo until December 1896 when the Jesuit fathers visited Rizal in Fort Santiago. There, the statuette kept Rizal company until he was led to his execution. It is said that before leaving his cell on December 30, he gave the statuette one last kiss. After which he handed it to the Jesuits who accompanied him on his last day. An alcohol burner. A book. A statuette. These are some of the things that Filipinos will remember Jose Rizal by. And these are some of the memorabilia that are on display at the Ateneo Art Gallery in an exhibit that aims to remind Filipinos of this outstanding hero. Dubbed “Rizal in the Ateneo/The Ateneo in Rizal” the exhibit features Rizal artifacts that will remind 21st century Filipinos of the 19th century Rizal in Ateneo, and the effect this Ateneo education had on his life and work. Curated by noted historian Dr. Ambeth R. Ocampo, the exhibit commemorates Rizal’s 150th birthday. The exhibit runs from June 17 to December 2011 at the Ateneo Art Gallery, 2/F Rizal Library, Special Collections Building. For more information, contact Yael Buencamino of the Ateneo Art Gallery at 426.6001 local 4160. For a complete list of historical exhibits, academic lectures and cultural presentations in the Ateneo de Manila University, log on to www.ateneo.edu. Login or register to post comments Print Email

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