NATIONAL ARTISTS. A picture of the theater design by national artist Salvador Bernal. Bernal, along with national artist Victorio Edades. Both of them hailed from Dagupan City. (Photo courtesy of Rep. Christopher de Venecia)

DAGUPAN CITY – The works of national artists Victorio Edades and Salvador Bernal will have a permanent home at their birthplace here after a law for the creation of a cultural center and museum was signed by President Rodrigo Duterte.

In a statement issued on Friday, Pangasinan Fourth District Representative Christopher de Venecia, the author of Republic Act (RA) 11726, said the passage of the law galvanizes the policy of the State to preserve the works of the national artists and acknowledges their significance in the nation’s cultural heritage.

De Venecia is the chairperson of the Special Committee on Creative Industry and Performing Arts in the House of Representatives.

“The newly signed law decrees the establishment of a cultural center and museum in Dagupan City, to be known as the Edades and Bernal Cultural Center and Museum, in honor of the city’s distinguished national artists, with the general purpose and objective of presenting and promoting cultures and the arts as well as creative industries in the community,” his statement read.

He said the museum shall be a collaboration between the city government of Dagupan and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCAA) along with its concerned affiliated cultural agencies and pertinent academic and private sector partners.

Its governance, organization, operations, and development will be provided for by the mutual agreement between the parties, to be executed and published within one year from the effectivity of the RA.

Edades was the acclaimed “Father of Modern Philippine Painting” while Bernal was hailed as the “Father of Theater Design” in the Philippines.

Edades was proclaimed a national artist for painting in 1976 and Bernal for Theater and Design in 2003.

Among Bernal’s designs was the “Sa Bunganga ng Pating” in 1995 which was executed using fish skeletons and bones while Edades is known for his famous painting "Sketch" in 1928. (PNA)