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Pinay.com | September 22, 2017

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Art Gallery: Khristina Reed Manansala | Pinay.com

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Jennifer Bichara

Khristina Reed Manansala, granddaughter of Filipino legend Vicente Manansala, demonstrated a natural artistic ability since she was a child, but she was never encouraged to pursue art professionally.

She remembers watching her grandfather from the spiral staircase, sitting on leather-swivel stool, whisking away his brush below his studio that richly smelled of old wood, dark chocolate, and turpentine. Her grandfather’s work area was where her cousins and she slept during their summer vacations.

“My earliest memory of having experienced the exhilaration of brushing paint on a canvas was when I and my brother as kids secretly painted over one of my grandfather’s works. Unforgivable,” she blurted with a laugh. From then on, a paint brush became a regular extension of her hand. She is now a full-fledged artist whose works have been exhibited in Philippine art galleries and sold to private art collectors in her home country and overseas.

Manansala’s earlier works revolved mostly around religious subjects, but she has since shown her flair for contemporary and abstract art. The artist’s take on women—their faces and phases—are now shown digitally at Pinay.com’s Art Gallery. 

The arts have always been a part of her life, from volunteering to paint school murals at school events, to embarking on personal painting projects to give as gifts, and to making time to finish paintings even during busy working schedules.

“I guess it is exactly because my grandfather is a world-renowned innovator of the visual arts that is why I never took it upon myself to take the initiative to trudge the same path. He inspired me as he has the entire art world, but I never thought I even deserved to stand under his shadow. I knew I had some talent but did not really think it worthy to go professional with it.  My art was just something very personal to me,” she said,

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Khristina Reed Manansala at work. All images are courtesy of the artist.

Manansala left the corporate world to become a full-time painter. It was daunting but thrilling, heartbreaking but freeing and arduous, yet refreshingly a satisfying experience for her. “It was not easy and definitely not an obvious choice for me to leave the corporate world,” she said.

Manansala had a thriving corporate career and yet her accomplishments did not make her feel as accomplished as she should. “There would be unguarded moments where I would entertain the possibility of doing what I actually love for a living, but as soon as that moment passes, reality hits me, and time and again, I just shrugged the thought off,” she said.

Then, six years ago, she took courage and gave herself a chance to pursue what she loved doing.  “My transition from the corporate world to the art scene was far from smooth. I am still thankful for the friends and all the memories, and wouldn’t have had the journey any other way. I can actually now truthfully say that I am finally along the path that makes me happy,” she said.

Manansala became a member of Art Association of the Philippines in 2010 and last February and was elected as the organization’s public relations officer.

“This is a new experience for me because I get to meet other artists who are more than willing to share what they have gone through in the art scene, good or bad. This has also given me the opportunity to share my knowledge in the arts and to serve fellow artists,” she said.

“Like most artists I know, I struggled on what to paint in the beginning.  I first did traditional subjects like Mother and Child, Harvest, Crucifixion, and still life paintings.  Lately, I focussed on contemporary subjects and exploring abstract art. You will find that my most recent works feature mainly women as I have always been fascinated with human anatomy,” she added.

Art Gallery recognizes the creativity and talents of Pinays worldwide. Drop by and visit our gallery again for our next featured artist.

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Jennifer Bichara

Jennifer Bichara is a free spirit. She is now a full-time art blogger, painter, sales agent for art pieces and a dealer of native products - one of her biggest passion besides art. Her work revolves around managing websites, writing, web content, web editing, coding, and working around WordPress themes for clients around the world. She is a champion of women's causes especially that of Filipinas and the love for art and art sake.  Aside from being the Publishing Assistant of online magazine Pinay.com, Jenny is currently a member of United Women Artists Association of the Philippines (UWAAP), happy helping artists gain exposure through her blog.  Here in jennysserendipity.com, her world revolves around ART and Pinay Artists of different genres.

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Comments

  1. Jenny! thank you for starting the filipina artist series. It’s great that Pinay.com can showcase the artistic talents of Pinays on a global scale. You are fulfilling yet another dream of mine for Pinay.com. Thank you!

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