|Artist Pepot Atienza in Lucban|
When you're in Lucban and it's not time for the Pahiyas Festival or the Paskong Payas (held every December), you have no excuse to be amused. The atelier of artist Joffrey Zamora Atienza, a.k.a. Pepot Atienza, can be an interesting side trip to your day-long sashaying in this Quezon Province town that's festooned by colorful kiping and native knick-knacks two months of the year. It's one thing to be impressed by the locals' handiwork and it's another thing to visit an artist's studio where creativity is on steroids all throughout the year.
A University of Santo Tomas graduate, Pepot is currently making waves in the children's book industry as an illustrator. His colorful work -- a contrivance of a smorgasbord of clay sculptures, doll reinforcements, and other household junk rendered in digital composites -- can be seen in bookstores nationwide.
One such book is the award-winning "Malong: The Magic Cloth". Penned by Mary Ann Ordinario-Floresta, the book tells of growing up in Mindanao where a cloth that's perceived to be magical turns into a hammock, a mosquito net, a war-time bag for essentials, a dressing room and a prayer mat, among others.
|Pepot's work in progress -- Cindy's 365 Bags and More|
|The guestroom with Pepot Atienza's painting on the wall|
|The entrance to Pepot's atelier|
|Inside Pepot's atelier|
The Atimonan-native recently moved in at a cozy spot behind the 5-hectare pilgrimage site called Kamay Ni Hesus in Brgy. Tinamnan. According to him, making Lucban his new base was an easy decision because of its climate and surroundings. The house rests on a tree-thronged hilly terrain that's also cleverly landscaped with different kinds of plants. He's planning of having it available for tourists' overnight stays soon since it's complete with an adorable front porch, living room, well-equipped kitchen and guestroom. A nearby hill in the same property can even be a great camping site.
The house is currently where he stays when he's engaged on his work at the studio that's conveniently located below the property. As with any typical artist, the workroom is designed to let in natural light that's filtered by a row of vegetation for creative inspiration.
|The charming front porch of the property|
|Pepot with his creations|
|Malong: The Magic Cloth|
After quitting his corporate job, Pepot started dabbling with watercolor to express his point-of-view that's usually about lucid dreams and out-of-this-world creatures. Or at least that's how I see some of his artworks that are displayed at the studio and on a wall of the guestroom. He probably got it from growing up at a coastal town where sea breeze has an enigmatic effect on one's sense of imagination. In any case, he has an off-center perspective of the world and it seems to be doing him good now that he's bent on pursuing clay as an art medium.
Art Shop Promoting Lucban
Some of his time is spent producing creative souvenirs for his online shop that's aptly called Pepot Art Shop. Its best-sellers are mostly items that promote anything about Lucban from mugs, shirts to bags. You can check the shop's featured items here.
|This guestroom will soon be available to tourists|
|The lovely pathway to the house|
|The potential camp site for guests|
You can catch "Imahika", his first month-long solo exhibit, at the Lucban Art Gallery that's located at the Escuela Pia Bldg. from November 11, 2017 to December 11, 2017. The gallery is open from Monday to Friday, 8:00am to 5:00pm.
How To Get There:
• Via Alabang, board a Lucban-bound van at the Festival Mall. Get off at the town proper.
• Board any tricycle for Brgy. Tinamnan, specifically the road behind Kamay Ni Hesus. The gated property is located at the beginning of the dirt road.
|With fellow travel bloggers showing off items by Pepot Art Shop|
Photography by Aubrey Gacer and Karl Acepcion
Aubrey Gacer is a Manila-based freelance photographer. Check out his work at Gacer Photography.
Mobile: (042) 540-1761
Interested to know more artists in the Philippines?
Check out the Mesmerizing Kinetic Art of Lucky Salayog.