Book on life, works of Layug presented before CBCP bishops

Ian Ocampo Flora

MANILA -- The book on the life and works of Presidential Merit Awardee for Ecclesiastical Art Willy Layug was formally presented before bishops of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) during their Sunday plenary session at the Pope Pius Center here.

The book team lead by Laya Boquiren, who authored the book, presented copies to incoming Davao Archbishop Romulo Valles and out-going CBCP president Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas.

Boquiren said that the book is a contribution to effort of documenting Filipino arts and crafts. The book chronicles the works of Layug for the past 40 years. The book is also a catalogue of Layug’s many works all over the country and abroad. His works could be seen as far as Minadanao and even in Rome.

Layug said that the book is aimed at putting into print his life lessons as an artist.

Boquiren, he said, was able to write his life story through the proper artistic light. She has authored three textbooks on art under one of the leading publishers in the country and has two other art history publications on the way. She started her career as a curatorial consultant for Gallery Genesis, a gallery specializing in aquarelle, in addition to having an extensive collection of selected masterpieces spanning turn of the century, modern, and contemporary periods.

The book’s photographs were handled by internationally awarded photographer Ruston Banal who is a friend of the prolific sculptor. The book is set for another soft launching on July 21 at SM City Pampanga.

Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, who wrote a message for the book, said that the life of Willy Layug is a story of the life of an artist modelled by the culture and traditions of his native place, Betis in Guagua, Pampanga and the works of local masters and the European maestros of the early centuries.

“Competent art critiques will be able to delineate the uniqueness and mastery in Willy's works. For me the outstanding quality of his sacred sculptures and retablos is their ability to move the people to prayer, to reach out to the divine, to that which can bring them close to God,” Tagle added.