February 29, 2024

After 46 years, the iconic artwork at the Benguet Capitol lobby is undergoing renovation.
Benguet Gov. Melchor Diclas said the renovation aims to beautify the age-old artwork.
The project was approved during the administration of then Gov. Crescencio Pacalso and is being implemented during the current term.
Diclas said the renovation is worth P500,000 and will take two months.
Local artist Dominador Carantes of New Lucban, Baguio City said he did the artwork in 1974 during the time of Gov.Ben Palispis, who served the province from 1968 to 1986.
“I was able to create it on the spot with the suggestions from past officials who told me what to put in the artwork,” Carantes said.
He said he worked on it while the Benguet Capitol, which was inaugurated in 1973, was undergoing finishing touches.
The artwork, depicting Benguet’s culture, tradition and livelihood, was created using the bas- relief or sculptural technique where the sculpted elements remain attached to a solid background of the same material.
The bas-relief artwork includes the Benguet mummies, rice terraces, indigenous dances and rituals, and traditional mining.   
Carantes, who created a sketch of the revamped artwork, said it would soon come alive through multi-colors once it is finished.
Carantes is a cousin of the late artist Geoffrey Carantes, the first Ibaloy University of the Philippines Fine Arts graduate.
The cousins worked together in the past to create artworks not only in Benguet but in the country as well. – Ofelia C. Empian