The Rizal Institute of Bonsai and Suiseki (RIBS), a group of hobbyists and collectors, is bringing the Japanese arts of bonsai and suiseki to Robinsons Place Antipolo through a week-long show and competition starting March 13, 2016.
Originally a practice of containerizing ancient wild tress in China, bonsai was exported to Japan around 500 years ago where it has become a prominent art form. From being regarded as a novelty in the west, it has now been embraced as a serious horticultural art form in Europe, America and Asia. Suiseki on the other hand are stones appreciated for their aesthetically-pleasing shapes and textures. The most common forms of suiseki are those that suggest a scene from nature like a distant mountain, an island or a waterfall, representing nature in the palm of one’s hand.
With the theme “Sa Tamang Panahon, A Bonsai Pabebe Show,” the 2016 RIBS Open Bonsai Competition and Show aims to promote the art bonsai and suiseki through a series of activities:
On March 13, bonsai and suiseki collections coming from Taytay, Cainta, Antipolo, Angono, Binangonan and Tanay will be exhibited at the Robinsons Place Antipolo Atrium from 9am to 11am for the official competition followed by the awarding of winners from 12nn to 2pm. As the event’s main aim is to make the art forms more accessible, free guided tours will be given to pre-school, primary school and high school students within Antipolo from March 14 to 16.
For buddying enthusiasts or for those who are interested to take on a new hobby, workshops will be available to the general public as well:
On March 17, from 9am to 12nn, learn the Basics of Bonsai from Mr. Marcos Cantaco. An electrical engineering graduate, Mr. Cantaco joined a local bonsai club in Rizal 5 years ago and has since become a celebrated artist for bonsai collectors in Rizal and Metro Manila. From 3pm to 6pm on the same day, Dr. Erwin Fabros will teach Suiseki Basics and Bonsai Accents. Dr. Erwin Fabros is hailed as the “suiseki guru” of the Bonsai and Suiseki Alliance of the Philippines (BSAPI), a medical doctor by profession and is the founding president of RIBS.
Workshops for more advanced enthusiasts will be held on March 18. From 9am to 12nn, Arch. Juan Llaga will cover topics such as carving, tropical design and freestyle positioning. Arch. Llaga is a known bonsai show competition judge in the Southeast Asia and other parts of the world. From 4pm to 6pm, Penjing or bonsai landscape will be taught by Mr. Sonny Luna. Considered as BSAPI’s penjing master, Mr. Luna is also known as a constant bonsai “mame” (mini) exhibitor.
Mr. Sean Reyes, Robinsons Place Antipolo Regional Operations Manager shares, “Hosting the exhibit is our way of making the mall true to its form and intention of providing residents of Antipolo and even visitors from Metro Manila and nearby towns an environment that is idyllic, relaxed and close to nature–something that both city and provincial officials want Antipolo to stand for in the minds of people. And for that reason, any activity that can further enrich this kind of worry-free experience is welcome at Robinsons Place Antipolo.”
The open-for-all exhibit resumes on March 19 up to March 20. The RIBS Open Bonsai Competition and Show is in partnership with the Yes to Green Project of Rizal in elevating eco-tourism through art within and around the province.