Freeway National Artist Collectors’ Series presents Carlos "Botong" Francisco

Kick starting the 100th year celebration of National Artist for Visual Arts, Freeway brings back the golden years of our beloved national artists through a fashion collection inspired by the beautiful pieces of Carlos "Botong" V. Francisco for the Freeway's the National Artist Collectors’ Series.

Celebrated its  launch last October 18, 2012 at the new The Row store in Glorietta 1, National Artist Collectors’ Series featuring National Artist for Visual Arts Carlos "Botong" V. Francisco, filled everyone's night with pure art indulgence and surprises as they gathered top fashion icons and artists to commemorate the greatness of the man who started reviving the forgotten art of mural.

The event night started with a very impressive art exhibition by Michael Blanco’s Academy of Artists. The exhibit showcased young talented artists at work, ages 6 years old to 12 years old, all from Botong Francisco’s hometown province of Angono, Rizal. These talented young artists wowed us with their incredible abilities showcased through live painting and sketching activity during the cocktails at 6 p.m.

I've been to Angono, Rizal last year, and I must say that if you love arts, this place is a must-visit, really! The whole town depicted how creative and talented their people are from the young generation to the old ones.

After witnessing these kids do the magic, the event proper hosted by premier actress Cherie Gil took place.  A short video presentation was shown featuring the life and works of our National Artist, then followed by a 25 piece elegant Holiday collection immortalizing Botong Francisco’s paintings

From canvass to fabric, it was majestic to witness how Botong’s timeless paintings were translated into sublimation graphic tees, work shirts, tailored dresses, casual tops, weekend wear, and many other accessories. 

Special guests Ino Manalo, Executive Director of the National Archives, and Carlos “Totong”  Francisco II, grandson of Botong Francisco, both shared interesting stories and trivia about Botong Francisco and his big influence in Philippines Art and Culture. Former Governor of Tarlac, Margarita “Tingting” Cojuangco also joined the art experts during the interview as she shared her passionate love on art and fashion. Other family and friends of Botong also graced the event to usher everyone to the life and works of the late artist.

After this Freeway official launch of the 100th year Anniversary of Botong Francisco, there will be series of events and celebrations throughout the year staged by each of the institution of the Botong consortium.The Carlos “Botong” V. Francisco Centennial Consortium is composed of Angono Artists Association, Ayala Museum, Blanco Family Museum, Botong Francisco Family, Cultural Center of the Philippines, Far Eastern University, Freeway: National Artist Collectors Series, Lopez Museum, Municipality of Angono, Museo ng BSP, Museum Foundation of the Philippines, Philippine Art Awards, SM Malls, University of Santo Tomas, UP Vargas Museum and the Yuchengco Museum.

Here's a a brief calendar of events that you can take note of to celebrate the works and life of the great Botong Francisco.

  • 18 September - UST Museum Centennial exhibit of Botong and Puruganan
  • 18 October - Freeway:  National Artist Collectors Series x Botong Francisco
  • 25 October - Inauguration of studio marker and other events in Angono at the Franciso Heritage Home
  • 10 November - “Sabado sa Museo at si Botong Francisco with Dr. Patrick D. Flores and Carlos (Totong) G. Francisco” at the National Art Gallery
  • 4 November Holy Mass at Botong’s grave at Angono Public Cemetery
  • 4 November Botong Francisco centennial event in Angono
  • 16 November Painting Exhibit by Botong’s Apprentice – Salvador Juban, Yuchengco Museum
  • 3rd week November UST College of Fine Arts and Design student exhibit
  • 19 November Botong conference in FEU
  • November /TBA CCP Exhibit of Dick Baldovino’s photographs of Botong Francisco
  • November onwards/TBA Tours within FEU
  • 22 November Angono Higantes Festival, Angono, Rizal
  • 23 November Angono town fiesta, Angono, Rizal
  • 4 December Ayala museum Images of Nation exhibit
  • February 2013/TBA Target date of launching of the consortium’s monograph
  • February 2013/TBA Botong tribute exhibit of Angono Artists Association, SM Megamall/Podium
  • February to March 2013 UST Museum Annual Inter-School On the Spot Painting Competition and Exhibition.

To know more about the collection and Botong’s 100th Anniversary celebrations, you can visit Freeway’s new website and get freshest updates at Freeway’s Facebook page ( and Twitter (

For inquiries and program updates on the Centennial, email at or check out Carlos "Botong' Francisco Centennial Facebook page.

Long live the amazing talent and creativity of the Pinoys!
Long live, Carlos "Botong" V. Francisco!

Congratulations, Freeway for this another amazing campaign!

No comments