Category Archives: People

Jose Johann Bitancor – 2nd Solo Exhibition

Jose Johann Bitancor

If you’re somewhere near Seattle, Washington, don’t miss this painting exhibit of Balereño Jose Johann Bitancor. Titled Timeline, this is his 2nd Solo Exhibit to be held from December 13, 2014 to January 23, 2015 at the Lynnwood Library Art Gallery, 19200 44th Ave. W. Lynnwood Washington, USA.

Jose Johann Bitancor

Before devoting himself full-time into painting, Jose Johann Bitancor has been a seasoned Visualizer/Graphic designer in the Philippines. As a designer, his practice ranged from exhibition designs to Advertising and Promotional materials for several Communications and Marketing Firms. Upon his migration to the U.S. in 2003, he sought to further increase his knowledge and enrolled at the University of Memphis, Memphis Tennessee in 2004, during which he was also granted a scholarship at the Memphis College of Art, Memphis Tennessee in 2006. Very recently, his longtime passion for sculpture produced several works in wood. Coupled with relentless experimentation with materials, his works now include textural abstractions based on everyday life’s experiences.

A graduate of Fine Arts from Far Eastern University, Manila Philippines in 1996. Bitancor has won several awards and distinctions in the Philippines and in United States. He also exhibited his works in various galleries and museums in the Philippines, Guam and the United States such as U.P. Vargas Museum-Diliman, Bencab Museum-Baguio, Rochester Contemporary Art Center-New York, Bliss on Bliss Art Projects-New York, Topaz Arts- New York, Seattle-Washington, Shoreline-Washington, Germantown Performing Art Centre-Tennessee, Tumon Guam among others.

Former Aurora Governor Eddie Ong Dies at 61

Former Aurora Governor Edgardo L. Ong
Portrait of former Aurora Governor Edgardo L. Ong painted by Joel Vedad

Relatives of former Aurora Governor Edgardo “Eddie” L. Ong announced his passing yesterday, October 2, 2013, at the age of 61 due to liver failure. His remains will be brought to Baler today, October 3, for a two-day wake at the Provincial Capitol.

“Gov Eddie” was the Vice Governor of Aurora province from 1987 until 1991 when he succeeded as Governor due to the death of then Governor Eunice Guerrero-Cucueco. He was later elected as Governor on 1992 and served three full terms until 2001.

Born on July 25, 1952 at Baler, former Governor Eddie Ong was the fourth child of Lt. Governor Estrello Ong and Natalia Lumasac Ong. He was married to Ramoncita “Chit” Ong who also served as Aurora Governor from 2001 to 2004. They have three children, Michael, Christine and Gian Carlo.

Update: The remains of former Governor Eddie Ong will lie in state at the Sangguning Panlalawigan hall, Provincial Capitol Baler, Aurora until Friday night. On Saturday, he will be transferred back to Manila and will be buried at the Heritage Memorial Park, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City next week.

Athena Imperial Represents Casiguran in Miss Philippines Earth 2011 Pageant

Athena Imperial
Athena Imperial. Photo by Mac ritual

Athena Mae D. Imperial, shown here in a 2009 photo, is representing the Municipality of Casiguran, Aurora in this year’s Miss Philippines Earth Pageant. Athena was a Top 10 finalist of Mutya ng Pilipinas 2009 that was held here at Baler, Aurora. She’s a high school valedictorian, a Communications Research graduate from UP Diliman and currently works at GMA Network. More info about her can be read at the Miss Philippines Earth website.

Miss Philippines-Earth 2011 Coronation Night will be held on June 5 at the Puerto Princesa City Coliseum, Palawan.

You can also follow the Athena Imperial, Miss Philippines-Earth 2011 Candidate FB Page for updates.

Bangon Dingalan Movement Tree Planting Project

Sulong Dingalan Movement
Sulong Dingalan Movement

Bangon Dingalan Movement, a group formed this year by concerned OFWs from Dingalan will have a massive tree planting project in the municipality. The initial phase of this project will be on December 28, 2010. So if you’re near the town on that date and interested to participate, you can get more info at their Facebook Page.

Bangon Dingalan Movement was formed with the aim of conceptualizing projects which may be helpful in uplifting the condition of the municipality of Dingalan, Aurora. The group is being led by Mr. Edelio Alday, who was already featured here in Batangbaler in 2006. You can read about him here. Read all the way to the comments, there’s a surprise ending.

The Bangon Dingalan Movement Facebook Page

The group has been renamed to Sulong Dingalan Movement
Click here to see pictures of their Tree Planting Project

Jeho and Johann Bitancor’s Paintings at the Everyday Filipino Heroes Exhibit

Everyday Filipino Heroes
Everyday Filipino Heroes

The Center for Art, New Ventures and Sustainable Development (CANVAS), in cooperation with the Vargas Museum, and with support from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) presents Everyday Filipino Heroes art exhibit and outdoor banner project. Paintings of Jeho and Johann Bitancor will be included in the exhibit.


In Everyday Filipino Heroes, artworks from dozens of artists send a collective message that elections are not about looking for saviors or heroes, because they are already all around – and within – us. Images of their original works will also be used for outdoor banners that will line the University’s famed acacia-sheltered Academic Oval, and create a parallel public art exhibit that engages in a relaxed and non-intimidating environment.

The exhibit will open on May 1, Saturday at 4:00 am at the Vargas Museum of the University of the Philippines in Diliman. It will run until May 31, 2010.

Jeho Bitancor - Pedicab
Jeho Bitancor - Pedicab

Jeho Bitancor’s painting – Pedicab (2′ x 4′)

“Ordinary Filipinos like the pedicab driver and regular commuter endure as much tragedy from Bad Government as from natural disasters. Their deprived but honest existence reaffirms our faith in goodness and the need to struggle against the existing social order.”

Jose Johann Bitancor - Magtitinda
Jose Johann Bitancor - Magtitinda

Jose Johann Bitancor’s painting – Magtitinda (2′ x 4′)

“My work depicts a typical street vendor engaged in a day to day survival in the daily grind. They are bereft with the luxuries in life but are nevertheless blessed with undying hope, perseverance and honest intent.” – Johann