Ben-Hur’s Profile

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Ben-Hur Gorospe Villanueva is a Filipino sculptor, painter, educator, lecturer, and art entrepreneur based in Baguio City.

He has also served as a president for the Society of Philippine Sculptors (SPS), as Art director for the Ephpheta Foundation for the Blind, Inc., and as vice president-treasurer for Unesco’s International Art Association (IAA).

Ben-Hur has travelled the country giving seminars, art workshops and therapies and spearheading art-related activities with professionals, educators, students, young artists, television/film writers and directors, street children, physically and sexually abused women, priests and sisters from various congregations, fast learners, children with learning disabilities, individuals with psychological disorders, the cultural minorities and many more.  Ben-Hur is so versatile he can prepare all types of modules for his activities which will meet his clients’ needs.

According to him, “Every individual has his own artistic inclinations and propensity be it any from the several types of Arts, that is, Painting, Sculpture, Architecture, Theatre, Music, Photography, Literature and Dance.  The person has the right to enhance and utilize it creatively.”  He himself had expressed his artistic flair and creative passion not only at art exhibitions in Manila, New York, Paris, Tokyo, Singapore, Helsinki, Havana, Cuba and recently in Yerevan, Armenia, but also in public art sculptures in the country.

Notable works Ben Hur Villanueva is best known as a sculptor, working with brass, metal, and wood. Notable sculptures by Villanueva include:

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"Ang Supremo" 1998

  • The Fort, Global City, Taguig City

“Ang Supremo” is a 3-meter tall brass-bronze statue that immortalizes the momentous event when Bonifacio and the KKK tore up their “cedulas” in protest to the Spanish authorities. The monument depicts Andres Bonifacio in a powerful stance with a torn certificate. The second figure is Gregoria de Jesus (Lakambini), wife of Bonifacio, holding a flag. The third figure is a Katipunero and Kasapi holding a bamboo spear. The sculpture bested 21 other entries.

“Risen Christ”

  • Caleruega, Nasugbu, Batangas

“Risen Christ” in Caleruega in 1996.  Caleruega is a prayer and renewal center owned by the Dominican Order in Batulao, Nasugbu in the province of Batangas, a three-hour drive from Manila. Back in its main compound is the Transfiguration Chapel.  It sits on the highest point of Caleruega where the sculpture of the Risen Christ is situated right in front of the chapel.

Risen Christ featured image
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“The Builders”

  • Botanical Gardens, Baguio City

“The Builders” was unveiled last September 1, 2009 in the Centennial Park (formerly Botanical Gardens) to mark Baguio City’s 100th year.  The sculpture represented the early settlers who worked as a team to build Baguio – the Igorot, the Chinese, the Japanese, the lowlander and the American.

“Ang Mandaragat”

  • Metro Manila

Ang Mandaragat” (Metal Sculpture) Early 80’s. Grand Winner for the Metro Manila Beautification Competition among municipalities. A project of the former First Lady Imelda Romualdez-Marcos.

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“The Filipinas”

“The Filipinas” A public art sculpture donated to the Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife. It was unveiled by the Former President Corazon Cojuangco Aquino on August 21, 1986. Photo also shows Connie Guanzon-Garcia wife of Ambassador Victor Garcia.  The sculpture was exhibited at Segunda Biennal dela Habana, Cuba before it was donated.

WORK EXPERIENCE

1961 – 1992
Faculty Member/Art Educator/Art Moderator
Ateneo Gradeschool, Quezon City
1961 – 1992
1992 – Present
Visual Artist/Sculptor/Art Educator
1992 – Present
1990 – 1991
Board of Director
Society of Philippine Sculptors
1990 – 1991
1988 – 1989
Art Coordinator
Ninoy Aquino Youth Talent Awards (NAYTA) Summer Arts Youth Camp of People’s Council for Culture, Education, Development and International Understanding (PCCEDIU) International Festival and Conference on Indigenous and Traditional Cultures (IFCITC)
1988 – 1989
1988 – 1989
Set Designer
Balintataw TV Drama Series People’s Television 4
1988 – 1989
1987 - 1989
Resident Artist
People’s Council for Culture, Education, Development and International Understanding (PCCEDIU)
1987 - 1989
1973 – 1980
Set Designer/Art Consultant
Ateneo Children’s Theater
1973 – 1980
1974 – 1976
Ceramic Designer
MARA (Margarita Ramos) Filipinas
1974 – 1976

Awards And Recognition

1973
Chancellor
Knights of Columbus Council 6259

1977
Most Outstanding Professional in the Field of Arts
Nuestra Senora de Aranzazu, San Mateo, Rizal

1978
First Honorable Mention – Sculpture Category
Art Association of the Philippines
31st Annual Art Competition

October 1984
Gold Medalist for Best in Sculpture
“Protection” Metal Sculpture
Art Association of the Philippines
33rd Annual Art Competition

1987
Designed the “Kapit Bisig”
A wood sculpture commissioned by Fr. James Reuter, S.J.
and given by the late former President Corazon Cojuangco-Aquino
to the Filipino people in commemoration of the
First EDSA Revolution Anniversary

1991
Donated a Metal Sculpture to Sining Kanlungan’s
People’s Park (Ninoy Aquino Parks and Wildlife)

1994 
Most Outstanding Professional
San Mateo Professional and Business Foundation

Feb. 10, 2006
Certificate of Merit
One-Man Show at the Maynard Galleries
Certificate awarded by Ben Torres, Art Commissioner
Las Vegas, President, TIAGON

Feb. 10, 2006
Ben-Hur Villanueva Day
Las Vegas, Nevada (Proclaimed by:Mayor Oscar B. Goodman)

Feb. 27, 2008
First Sining Pambansa Festival (Guest Speaker)
Teacher’s Camp, Baguio City

Sept. 1, 2009 
“The Builders”
A 12 feet, five – figure bronze Public Art Sculpture for the
Centennial Celebration of Baguio City
Centennial Parks (formerly Botanical Garden)
Gen. Leonard Wood, Baguio City

Sept. 21, 2009 
Plaque of Recognition
In recognition for his exemplary artistic achievements
in his field of expertise and area of discipline which brought
much pride to the people of San Mateo.

International Activities

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Yerevan, Armenia

September 2007
16th Lantern of the East International Art Festival
Visual Arts for the Visually Impaired Children
Art Workshop for the Blind ages 6 – 18 years old

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Pyeongtaek, Korea

October – November 2006 
16TH Pyeongtaek International Art Festival

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Los Angeles, California

October – November 2006 
15th Lantern of the East International Art Festival

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Las Vegas, Nevada

October 2005
Asia Pacific Festival and Trade Show

February 2006
One-Man Show
Charlton Art Center

 

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Singapore

October – November 2003 
Art Exhibit Dauphine Art Gallery
Volvo Show Art Loft Gallery

May 2004
Participant – Singapore Arts Festival

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New York, USA​

1989
Philippine Delegate/Art Director
International Exhibit in Relation to the
State Visit of Former President Aquino Video Recording & Taping of Balintataw’s
International TV Program Series

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Helsinki, Finland

1989
Philippine Delegate/Art Coordinator
ITI (International Theatre Institute)
World Annual Arts Festival & Conference

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Tokyo, Japan

1969
Philippine Representative
International School Tour for Art Educators
Ateneo Grade School

October – November September 1988
Philippine Delegate as Art Director
Conference with Kiyoshi Wakamiya
Balintataw’s International TV Program Series

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Habana, Cuba

1971
Philippine Representative Sculpture category
“7th Segunda Biennale de la Habana”

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Paris, France

1971 
Filipino Representative
Wood Sculpture “Kabuanan,
7th Biennale International”
Also exhibited at Ateneo Gallery/Sining Kayumanggi

ART EXHIBITIONS

Dec 2008 – July 2009
“Konseho ng Sining ng Baguio Group Exhibit”
The Manor Hotel
Camp John Hay, Baguio City

2000
“Two Suns, Two Sons”
Two-Man Show with son, Bumbo Villanueva
Crucible Gallery

April 2000
“Arko ni Apo”
Installation Art
Society of Philippine Sculptors’ Public Art Exhibit
Ayala Museum, Makati City

March 1998
Baguio Art’s Guild’s 10th Anniversary Exhibit
Christine’s Gallery, Café By the Ruins
Baguio City

February 1998
“Tribute to the Titans”
Group Show with Installation and Art Performance
for Artists who have passed away

1997
“Tam-Awan Artists”
Group Show with Baguio Artists including BenCab
Boston Gallery, Cubao

November 1996
“Sculptures”
One-Man Show
Crucible Gallery

May 1996
“Two-Suns, Two Sons”
Two-Man Show with son, Bumbo Villanueva
Christine’s Gallery, Café By the Ruins
Baguio City

September 1995
Society of Philippine Sculptors’ Group Exhibit
Quezon City Hall

July 1995
Society of Philippine Sculptors’ Group Exhibit
Art Center, SM Megamall

Nov – Dec 1995
One-Man Show
Balay Negrense
Silay City, Negros Occidental

April 1994
Philippine Association of Figurative Artists (PAFA)
Anniversary Exhibit, Nemiranda Arthouse

August 1993
Society of Philippine Sculptors’ Annual Art Exhibit
Nikko Hotel, Makati City

August 1992
Society of Philippine Sculptors’ Annual Art Exhibit
“Bato, Bakal, Atbp.” Nayong Pilipino

July 1992
Rizal Artists’ Federation (RAF) Exhibit
Rizal Capitol Office, Pasig City

1991
Society of Philippine Sculptors’ Annual Art Exhibit
Nemiranda Arthouse and Atelier Galerie

1990
“Arts & Trends” Art Exhibit
White Plains, Quezon City

1987 – 1989
Peace & Freedom Annual Art Exhibit
Kalayaan Hall, Malacanang, Manila

1980
“Paintings & Sculptures” Art Exhibit
Manila Peninsula, Makati City

1979
Abbott Lighter’s Sculpture Compton & Exhibit
Manila

1975
One-Man Show Art Exhibit
Quad Gallery

 

 

SPECIAL PROGRAM SEMINAR & COMPETITION JUDGEMENT

  • Art Workshops for the Street Children, Children with Learning Disabilities, Physically and Sexually Abused Women, Cancer Patients, Indigenous Groups, Religious Groups, Educators, Media People, etc.
  • Art Educator & Founder of Blind Artists EPHPHETA, Foundation for the Blind, Q.C.
  • Judge - 2005 Metrobank National Art Competition, Makati, Philippines

Ben-Hur G. Villanueva’s  30-year teaching experience at the Ateneo De Manila University inspired him to live up to the institution’s vision of Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam, a Latin phrase which means “For the greater Glory of God” and mission of being a “ Man for Others.”  He personally believes that what the Lord has given us, we should give Him back.  As a sculptor, visual artist, and educator, Ben-Hur G. Villanueva, is an “Artist for Others.”  He shares his God-given talents through his artworks with others which make his life more meaningful and blessed.

Keeping these beliefs in mind, Villanueva moved to Baguio City upon retiring from teaching at Ateneo in 1992. He put up an arts workshop, Arko Ni Apo (Ilocano: Ark of the Lord), and he started spearheading various art-related activities catering to a people ranging from professionals, educators, students, young artists, television/film writers and directors, street children, to various religious groups.

Portfolio

Arko ni Apo.

Arko ni Apo is an art gallery owned by Ben Hur Villanueva and his family.
Arko ni Apo means Ark of the Lord in Ilocano.

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