Oro's Nic Aca joins GO ON Int'l Performance Art Festival

July 10, 2020

As the separation between public and private changes, the space of the alleyway begins to take on new meanings and serve new functions. The laneway; or side street, alley, back street, or byway comes to represent that transitional space between the home and the street, between the crowded main routes and the safety of isolation off the beaten path. As cities grow, laneways are being considered as spaces for housing, business and public space, utilizing all areas of the city and blurring the line between the main arteries and the alternative routes. The Laneway is a private space in public, it is exclusive; only a local can navigate these back routes and move through the city with ease. The buildings are often adorned with street art, murals and graffiti, showing the local flavour of the neighbourhood, geared for the neighbourhood’s enjoyment. These paths can be a place of connection, weaving through the city creating parallel and alternative connections in cities that are increasingly commercial and impersonal. Taking inspiration from the Happenings of the 50’s and The Fluxus movement of the 60’s and 70’s, GO ON looks to approach performance as accessible, improvisational and process focused. As we find new solutions to present live performance when it is not safe to gather in large groups, the impromptu smartphone-recorded performance offers an opportunity to create and distribute performance art online. Participating Artists Aokid | Tokyo, Japan website | instagram | youtube Based in Tokyo,While having breakdance as root,I work on various methods such as drawing,dance works, and events. The project “Aokid cIty”started in 2012,and the guerrilla perfomance event”Doubutsuen/Zoo”started in 2016. Nicolas Aca | Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines website  Nic Aca is a visual artist from Cagayan de Oro City. He has participated in a number of national and international performance art festivals, including DJAMOE 6 in 2017 at Bandong, Indonesia, LATENT ACTION ASEAN VILLAGE PROJECT in 2016 at Xian, China, and 18th ASIAN ART BIENNALE 2018 in Bangladesh. Recently, his work, "Self Portrait: The Artist as Performance" was a Finalist for the Philippine Art Awards 2019. Maya Bendavid | Toronto, Canada website | twitter | instagram Maya Ben David (MBD) is a Toronto-based Jewish-Iranian Anthropomorphic Airplane. Working in video, installation and performance, she creates worlds and characters that aid her ongoing exploration of anthropomorphism, cosplay and performative personas. Racquel de Loyola | Gapab City Nueva Ecija, Philippines website | twitter Raquel de Loyola is an artist based in the Philippines whose works primarily addresses women’s issue, identity, colonization, migration, displacement, capitalism, globalization and the present state of affairs. She actively engaged and presented works locally and abroad. De Loyola continue explorations with crossing established disciplines and other possibilities. She is currently working with soft fabric sculptures and cloth based expositions. Daisuke Takeya | Toronto, Canada website | Multi layered Surfaces | Field Trip Project | Fukushima NO ALICE Daisuke Takeya is a Toronto-Tokyo based interdisciplinary artist and independent curator. His praxis is comprised of the exploration of nature and plausibility in contemporary society, and hinges on all kinds of double meanings. He is the executive director of Responding: International Performance Art Festival and Meeting erected in 2018. Holly Timpener | Toronto, Canada website | instagram Holly Timpener has performed at Month of Performance Berlin, Stride Gallery, Nuit Blanche (Calgary & Toronto), The Art Gallery of Ontario, and at the Venice International Performance Art Week. Timpener established a queer performance event entitled Pi*llOry that shows three times a year in Toronto.   James Knott | Markham, Canada website | twitter | instagram James Knott is an emerging, Toronto-based artist, graduated from OCAD University. Their performance-based practice combines media to create immersive, emotionally resonant experiences for the viewer; housing personal narratives and queer experience through poeticism, self mythologizing, and auto-iconographic aestheticism. Johannes Zits | Toronto, Canada website | #johanneszits on social media Toronto based artist Johannes Zits has presented work across Canada and internationally. His exhibitions, performances and research projects have taken him to Havana, Vienna, Shanghai, Mexico City and elsewhere. This year Johannes is artist-in-residency at the McIntosh Gallery in London, Ontario, where he also exhibited Listening to Trees.

Eating History with Cucina Higala's Mindanao Heritage Packed Meals

July 8, 2020

Mindanao's first and so far the only restaurant which celebrates the island's heritage cuisine, is taking a bold new step to introduce the  heritage and history of its menu to more people. Originally conceived as a  showcase for Mindanao's heritage Filipino dishes, Cucina Higala is showcasing its signature flagship dishes in an affordable, easily transportable package gourmands can enjoy in the safety and comfort of their own homes and offices. The four Mindanao Heritage Dishes showcased in Cucina Higala's Packed Meals include ·         Kagay-anons' favorite Humba,  Cagayan de Oro's well-loved slow cooked pork belly, complete with sweet soy black bean sauce, banana blossoms, crumbled toasted peanuts, hard cooked quail egg, picked onions, cherry tomatoes; ·         Marawi-inspired Beef Randang, the signature aromatic beef stew of the Meranaws sauted with charred coconut, picked cucumber batons, spiced with that favorite Meranaw condiment palapa; ·         Camiguin's Chicken Surol, the island's indigenous chicken stew with coconut milk and fresh native oregano; and, ·          their version of Chicken Pastil, Cucina's version of the traditional Maguindanaon delicacy featuring grilled banana leaf rice infused with turmeric, savory chicken flakes, chicken liver, boiled egg topped with roasted coconut. "Cucina Higala's Mindanao Heritage Packed Meals were developed to introduce our signature Heritage Dishes to more people so they can enjoy a more affordable portion which can easily be picked up or delivered straight to the comfort of their homes or offices," said Jan Uy, president and CEO of the TFC Group which owns and manages Cucina Higala. Each packed meal only costs P120 (for Humba, Chicken Surol and Chiken Pastil) and P150 (for Beef Randang). Each 260 gram meal was carefully calibrated by Cucina Higala to be a delicious, filling meal in itself, or a group or family of four, for instance, can each buy one of each and share portions with everyone so all can share the experience of literally "eating history." "Cucina Higala's Mindanao Heritage Packed Meals can easily be ordered through foodpanda, streetby and GrabFood, or directly through our Facebook page or direct landline," said Joe Jake Almbodobar, Cucina Higala Restaurant Manager. "We do advise our customers to consume their meals immediately to fully enjoy them while they are still fresh and warm. For the safety conscious, our meals are also packed in sturdy containers which are microwavable and re-usable to reduce waste." For orders please call (088) 881-1570 or 0917-794-6118    For a more immersive experience for those who haven't tried Cucina Higala's Mindanao Heritage Packed Meals yet, you can click on this link to view this short video. Incidentally, for those who'd rather enjoy their Mindanao Heritage Meals with the complete ambience of Cucina Higala, they are now open at 222 Gen. N. Capistrano St., Cagayan de Oro City as certified by the Department of Tourism Region X here.

Local abaca face masks address health and environment issues

July 4, 2020

Two local manufacturers are using abaca as the base material to build safe, affordable face masks which address health and environment issues brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.  “Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) wastes are now polluting the environment from canals, streets, hiking trails, rivers up to the ocean,” notes Lolita Cabanlet of Oro Handmade Innovations Inc. “Masks and gloves are found washed-up on the shores or floating on the seas posing a real  threat to marine eco system.” Formerly known as CDO Handmade Paper Crafts, Oro Handmade is a maker of sustainable packaging, stationery and home accents under the brand INDIGENOUS.PH, and is now producing 100% Biodegradable Origami non-surgical masks to help curb rising plastics wastes from disposable face masks and similar PPEs.  “The raw material we use are  the finest abaca fiber, wild cogon grass, pineapple leaves and natural adhesive such as corn or cassava starch,” said Cabanlet. “There are no chemicals , latex,  hardeners  nor synthetic fibers added in the paper, thus, our masks decompose faster and easier.” “While most masks use elastic bands, we use a paper twine ear loop to eliminate synthetic fibers and plastics that will take years to biodegrade,” she added.  The Origami Mask features intricate Origami design to comfortably cover both the mouth and nose. In addition, it ensures better filtration through its folded layers of Abaca paper.  According to Kennedy Costales, executive director of the Philippine Fiber Industry Development Authority (PHILFIDA), abaca’s porous fibers make it an ideal material for medical fabric. Oro Handmade Innovations Inc. are also in the prototyping stage for N95 surgical masks, also made of Abaca fiber. The first  prototype will be subjected  to laboratory tests to meet  international filtration standards.  Meantime, a pioneer handmade paper social enterprise in Salay, Misamis Oriental has developed a similar face mask using abaca and other indigenous fibers. Salay Handmade Products Industries Inc. (formerly known as Salay Handmade Paper Products Industries or SHAPII) has been making stationery products from Indigenous fibers for over 30 years.  It began development of its abaca based face masks in response to the call of World Fair Trade-Asia (of which it is a member) for personal protective equipment against the COVID-19 pandemic. With abaca fiber as its base, SHPII can now produce 6,000 pcs of its hand-made 7xB brand face masks every week, which Neil Francis Rafisura, general manager, emphasized is not intended for medical use, but rather for general public use to enable medical and other frontliners to have first dibs at the tight supply of medical grade face masks.  Initial tests conducted by the Department of Science and Technology Region X (DOST-X) indicate some initially encouraging findings although further tests have been recommended to confirm its health and environment related qualities, and due diligence to ensure no toxic chemicals and processes were used in their production.  Initial Findings The Department of Science and Technology X (DOST X), in an effort to assist non-government and other government agencies in combatting the health crisis brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, is conducting evaluation of materials that can be alternatively used in making home-made face masks, as supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is in widespread shortage.   One of the materials evaluated by the DOST X thru its Regional Standards and Testing Laboratories were samples of handmade paper from abaca and masks made of abaca handmade paper.  “These samples should have been submitted to more advanced research institutes but there were mobility limitations.  Microscopy was used to evaluate fiber structures and measure pore sizes. Simple water drop test and laboratory-modified water drop test were done to evaluate water repellency or absorbency. These were done on the samples as well as on commercial surgical face and N95 masks and selected controls for comparison of results, "said Alfonso P. Alamban, DOST-X regional director.   Fiber structure and size of pores The observations suggest that the abaca handmade paper, having larger fibers among others, is comparable to the outer layer of a commercial 3-ply surgical mask. In terms of fiber configuration -how fibers are close or far from each other- the observations suggest that those of the abaca handmade paper have medium to tight configuration.  Lastly, the pore sizes in terms of the diameter of the spaces in between fibers in microns, µm, were measured using an ocular and stage micrometer. Observations were that the pore sizes of the samples range from 10-70µm.  There were no observations made on surgical and N95 masks. However, an optical microscopic study (Neupane, 2019) on masks showed that cloth masks have pore sizes ranging 80-500 µm1.  Water repellency The abaca handmade paper samples were also evaluated in terms of its repellency thru the simple water drop test.  The analyst’s observations suggest that both the abaca handmade paper and actual abaca mask did not yield a bead of water within and after at least 30 seconds.  The repellent control, a taffeta cloth, yielded a well-defined water droplet and stayed there for more than 30 seconds whereas the non-repellent control, a cotton cloth, yielded no bead at all.  The commercial surgical mask yielded a bead of water that stayed there for more than 30 seconds. N95 mask was not included in this particular testing.  Water absorbency Another test which was used to evaluate the repellency or absorbency of the sample masks is the laboratory-modified water drop test. Water repellency spray test method is used to measure resistance of fabrics to wetting by water.  Evaluation is done by comparing wetted pattern with pictures on a standard chart.    Results from the experiment show that the mask sample absorbed three to five percent (3-5%), the sample N95 mask absorbed forty-six percent (46%), and the sample surgical mask absorbed zero point seventeen percent (0.17%) of the total volume of water dispensed.    Though DOST X evaluated the materials for hand-made face masks with the best of its available resources, it is still continually upgrading its capabilities to be able to conduct the standard tests as approved by regulatory bodies.  The results of the evaluation of surface morphology, fiber configuration, and pore size of the material do not conclusively correlate to the filtering efficiency of a mask.  The simple and laboratory-modified water drop tests conducted by the laboratory do not reflect efficiency to filter particulate matter and that it was suggestive only of the masks’ outermost layer’s capacity to absorb or repel water.  According to CDC (2009) filtration efficiency of masks can be measured thru Particulate Filtration Efficiency and Bacterial Filtration Efficiency2 (BFE) methods which involve a biological organism aerosol at an airflow of 28L/min for BFE or an aerosol of 0.1µm latex spheres and a velocity ranging from 0.5 to 25cm/sec.   The evaluation observations, however, may provide options as to the better choice from available materials. As in most scientific studies, additional tests are always welcome. One possible area of study is the abaca handmade paper mask’s comparability as seven times better in filtration rate than cloth masks and less water absorbent than N95 mask, which was not a conclusion in the DOST-X’s evaluation report.  Finally, DOST-X recommends the conduct of standard tests by accredited institutions and further R&D on the potential of abaca handmade paper as a material component of face masks because it is locally available and environment friendly. Oro Handmade Innovations and SHPII are sending samples of their abaca masks for further testing to DOST’s Philippine Textile Research Institute (PTRI). Whatever the final results, Cagayan de Oro and Misamis Oriental should both be proud to have socially aware and environmentally responsible firms such as these which prioritize the development of locally available resources to address health issues without compromising sustainability.


July 1, 2020

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Couch Potato available soon in CDO for online delivery

June 30, 2020

COUCH Potato has just opened its first ever branch in Mindanao right here in Cagayan de Oro City via Food Hub. Located at Stonestown Suites along Masterson Avenue in uptown Cagayan de Oro, Food Hub introduces Couch Potato to Kagay-anons and more. They also serve their in-house dishes of rice meals (bacon liempo with egg, sisig rice, ground pork with quail eggs, chicken fillet with white sauce, beef tapa with egg) and standalone dishes (sisig, chicken fillet with white sauce, gambas, ground pork with quail eggs and beef tapa). Couch Potato is the source of flavorfully awesome fries. Whether you like your fries tangy, salty or sweet, there’s bound to be a flavor for you. Despite being affordable, their premium fries retain their crispy touch hours after being cooked and don’t get soggy at all. Customers get to enjoy the good stuff at reasonable prices. The signature flavors of Couch Potato are adobo and ube but they do serve the following too: queso de bola, ranch, cheese, taco, sour cream, barbecue, jalapeño, Samyang, chocolate and couch special. They are available in five sizes: craving, dieting, hungry, starving and drooling. Here in Cagayan de Oro City, Couch Potato and Food Hub are available via Food Panda and Grab at the following times: Mondays to Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Virtual Adlaw Kagay-an for Oro’s 70th Charter Day

June 15, 2020

Cagayan de Oro will have a virtual celebration of its 70th City Charter Day Anniversary on June 15, 2020 in compliance with the national government’s guidelines for modified general community quarantine, In a memorandum dated 09 June 2020, City Administrator Teodoro Sabuga-a, Jr. advised all city hall department heads and chiefs of office that the city’s celebration of both the 122nd Philippine Independence Day on 12 June 2020 and the 70th City Charter Day on 15 June 2020 would be “simple, yet significant”, and would be limited to a few guests.” Employees of your respective offices are not required to attend the activities on both days,” Sabuga-a added. However, city hall department heads and chiefs of offices were directed to join the 6:30AM Holy Mass at the Saint Augustine Metropolitan Cathedral and the flag raising ceremony at the area fronting the executive building immediately after at 800AM.  The City Mayor’s Annual Report by Mayor Oscar S. Moreno immediately follows at 9:00AM after the flag raising rites. However, the mayor’s report would be aired live over Facebook and Channel 45 of Parasat Cable TV thus city hall department heads and chiefs of offices may follow it from their respective offices, it being a special holiday in the city. In its official Facebook page, Kagay-anons here and outside the city and the country were invited to join the virtual celebration to be aired live on Facebook, Parasat Channel 45 and radio stations in the city on 15 June 2020. Adlaw Kagay-an On August 2, 1999, the Cagayan de Oro City Council unanimously approved Resolution No. 4365-99 “Permanently adopting the name Adlaw Kagay-an for the City Charter Day.” The resolution noted that since the signing of the City Charter in Malacañang Palace on June 15, 1950 had been commemorated ever since in the city as “City Charter Day”. However, the council further noted that City Charter Day was a “rather anglicized name” compared to other cities which had already adopted Filipino names for their respective charter days such as Araw ng Maynila and Araw ng Dabaw. “Since the Charter Day of Cagayan de Oro City is considered a significant historical milestone in the city’s history, and the national guiding principles of History from the Filipino point of view must also guide the city in the use of names for indigenous events and activities,” the resolution noted further. Considering how historian scholars had traced the etymology of the term Cagayan to the Proto-Philippine language where the word kagay means “river”, and Kagay-an means “the place where there is a river”. Thus, the city council jointly and unanimously adopted to permanently adopt the name Adlaw Kagay-an for the City Charter Day. The resolution was sponsored by Councilors Maryanne C. Enteria, Noel S. Beja and President D. Elipe with then Vice Mayor John L. Elizaga as presiding officer, and attested by Teresita R. Bancoro, assistant city council secretary for the city secretary. Higala-ay Festival The Adlaw Kagay-an resolution marked the first instance where the first of the city’s two main holidays were renamed. The city fiesta traditionally celebrated on August 28 in celebration of the feast day of its patron saint, St. Augustine of Hippo, has undergone at least four name changes in the last two decades. Previously known as the Kagayhaan Festival, Promote CDO sponsored a competition in 2007 to find a more appropriate name that would reflect Cagayan de Oro’s ethnicity, heritage and history. After initially selecting Karambola Kagay-an, the NGO settled on Kagay-an after receiving negative feedback about the term Karambola. However, the new moniker only lasted six years as the new administration of present Mayor Oscar S. Moreno chose to change the festival name to Higalaay Kagay-an in 2014, before finally dropping Kagay-an altogether in 2016 and changing it again to Higalaay Festival. Spring Festival Since 2016, the city has added two more festivals in its calendar, with one being celebrated every quarter of the year. For the first quarter, the city celebrates its Chinese heritage and history by joining the worldwide celebration of the Spring Festival, otherwise known as the Chinese New Year and locally branded as the Cagayan de Oro Chinese New Year Festival. Since the festival date changes every year according to the Lunar Calendar, the date of the city’s first quarter festival is movable and is spearheaded by the Cagayan de Oro Filipino-Chinese Community which counts no less than 23 Filipino-Chinese organizations in its ranks. Himugso Festival This is followed in the second quarter by the Himugso Festival which jointly celebrates the Philippines’ Independence Day on June 12 and the Cagayan de Oro City Charter Day Adlaw Kagay-an on June 15. With the tagline Birthing a City. Birthing a Nation. Birthing Tomorrow,  Himugso is a celebration of the Cagayan de Oro City and the Philippines’ history and heritage and traditionally celebrated with exhibits, plays, walking and windshield tours of the city’s historical sites as the new generation is invited to look back at the people and events which made the freedom and prosperity they enjoy today possible.


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