Asia Society Presents 'Filipino Design Now: Filipino Heritage Through the Eyes of Celebrated Designers'

Clutch by Wynn Wynn Ong.

NEW YORK — August 27, 2015. Asia Society presents Filipino Design Now, a special showcase of top Filipino designers from September 11, 2015 to January 3, 2016. This special display coincides with Philippine Gold: Treasures of Forgotten Kingdoms, an exhibition of over 100 spectacular works of gold from the 10th to 13th century, highlighting the creativity, prosperity and cultural connections of the precolonial period.

Asia Society celebrates the artistic visions of top Filipino designers in this exclusive showcase conceived by Filipino jewelry designer Federico De Vera. An arbiter of taste, De Vera is a gallery owner of antique objects, curios, and jewelry, and more recently, the author of De Vera Objects and De Vera Jewelry.

Presented in Asia Society’s lobby, the showcase features exclusive collections by fourteen renowned Filipino designers who have been invited to create products inspired by their interpretation of Philippine culture. Filipino Design Now provides an opportunity to experience the rich culture and heritage of the Philippines, promoting appreciation of and inspiring pride in Filipino design, material and craftsmanship. Signature pieces from these talented designer’s collections have been selected for inclusion in the display, with the balance of the collections featured for sale at AsiaStore and online at

Featured designers include:

  • Maricris Brias, home textiles. Brias and her local artisans are committed to reviving the native artistry of Mindanao’s ethnic tribes, manufacturing textiles and home accents created from local abaca and banana fiber, handwoven exclusively by T’boli and Mandaya natives.
  • Lenora Cabili, fashion. Cabili’s designs are inspired by tradition, mixing the past with present, creating unique garments that incorporate ancient techniques of weaving, embroidery and bead work from indigenous Filipino groups.
  • Federico de Vera, jewelry. De Vera strives to find new lives for old things that have been discarded, reinterpreting them from a different point of view. His pieces are comprised of antique elements, often simultaneously organic and baroque, each unique and one of a kind.
  • Ian Giron, home accents. Giron creates contemporary home accents using time-tested traditional Filipino techniques. To Giron, the beauty of Filipino craft lies in how it harmoniously combines local motifs and symbols with Western elements.
  • Jewelmer, jewelry. Golden South Sea pearls are the centerpiece of the brand. Through a highly selective process, these elusive gems inspire artisans to create finely crafted jewelry to fulfill Jewelmer’s celebration of beauty in harmonious symmetry with nature.
  • Natalya Lagdameo, novelty textiles. Drawing on work as an interior designer and inspired by heirlooms and artifacts from around the archipelago, Lagdameo creates textile designs utilizing local Filipino materials.
  • Josie Natori, jewelry. Natori’s iconic, global brand, the House of Natori celebrates Asian aesthetics with the spirit of Natori’s adopted home in America, effortlessly melding the visual best of both the East and the West.
  • Tina Ocampo for Celestina, evening bags. Ocampo’s luxury brand is handcrafted by Filipino artisans, practicing age-old techniques and using exotic materials that can only be found in the Philippines.
  • Wynn Wynn Ong, jewelry. Favoring stones in their organic, untouched states and incorporating materials not often associated with jewelry, Ong combines unexpected elements into her meticulously hand crafted jewelry designs.
  • Anne Saguil, fashion. Saguil combines her passion for craftsmanship and fashion, designing clothes and accessories using hand embroidered techniques and indigenous handwoven materials.
  • Ditta Sandico, fashion. Sandico transforms indigenous fibers, such as banana, pineapple and abaca into a fashion art form, designing wraps that follow the movements of the body.
  • Rafe Totengco, minaudières. Totengco melds quality with style in his signature evening bags, featuring indigenous Filipino materials that blend an uptown sophistication with a downtown edge.
  • Bea Valdes, jewelry & handbags. Valdes takes inspiration from various cultures, sourcing materials, and ideas from around the world for her distinctive, luxury accessories while continuing to shine a light on the Philippines as a design hub as she supports local artisans and their craftsmanship.
  • Al Valenciano for Balay ni Atong, blankets. Valenciano’s signature brand showcases hand-woven textiles made on traditional wooden looms by local artisans using weaving techniques passed on through generations.

Filipino Design Now is supported by FedEx Express. 

FedEx Express