Friday, August 26, 2011

Ilonggo Pride Statue "Lin-ay Sang Iloilo" Unvailed

The bronze-made “Ilonggo Pride Statue” atop the dome of the new Iloilo City Hall building was officially unveiled during the celebration of Iloilo City’s 74th Charter Day on August 25, 2011.

The 19-feet-high statue of a female was designed by Prof. Eduardo Defensor of Mandurriao, Iloilo City who outlined the meaning, symbolism and history of the “Lin-ay Sang Iloilo.”

Defensor said he never hesitated in accepting the project when it was offered to him since he had been dreaming of a statue that would make history as the first of its kind in the country since 15 years ago.

The graceful figure of the ‘lin-ay’ holds on her right hand a bunch of harvested rice. Her left hand holds a scythe (garab) that has long been the traditional harvesting tool in the region.

She is wearing an embroidered blouse, symbolic of one of the popular traditional arts of the city and province. On top of it is a “sablay” of a “hablon,” the textile which contributed to Iloilo’s becoming the second city of the Philippines, next to Manila, at the onset of the 19th century.

Her skirt is a “patadyong,” our native hand-woven wrap-around skirt.

Also, the statue is wearing the traditional bandana usually worn by farm ladies to protect them from the heat of the sun. On her neck she wears an ethnic necklace, symbolic of her ancestry, as she comes from a rich mythic past, from the Maragtas, the “Barter of Panay,” and the long line of heroic datus that peopled the island of Panay.

The figure stands on a field of rice as Iloilo is known as the rice granary of Visayas.

The figure is situated on top of a pedestal that has four sides carved with the major assets of Iloilo. The front shows the rice-farming industry; right, sugarcane; left, fishing industry; and back, education because Iloilo is considered as the educational center of Visayas and Mindanao.

Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog said this statue will represent honor and respect to women who play a major role in the success of this city. He also mentioned that the initial 10-million worth of statue was donated by an Ilongga philanthropist who truly loves Iloilo but prefers to remain anonymous.

“We would like to extend our warmest thanks to our donor who donated this statue without any strings attached nor political ambition,” he stressed.

Mabilog said the donor never refused him when he asked her to sponsor the statue.

“It took me 10 seconds to convince our donor and I’m very thankful for her kind-heartedness,” he ended.

by Montesa Griño-Caoyonan
source: The News Today

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