Monday, December 29, 2008

Dine, Drink, and Appreciate Art

Anthony Fermin's "Tea Party"

Dining establishments are now serving more than food on the menu. Now you can take away not just your favorite dish, but you can also bring home a painting you like, all wrapped up to go. Art exhibits, once limited to galleries, are finding new homes in restaurants like Le Souffle, Green Halo Cafe, and Bacolod-based Hong Kong Kitchen.

The Hong Kong Kitchen’s 40-person function room offers not just the usual multiple-course Chinese meal but Negros-based visual artist Anthony Fermin’s collection of paintings of memorable places he has visited, like an Iloilo treehouse and the Bacolod Plaza Cathedral where he regularly buys flowers for his shop. To stay consistent with the restaurant’s Oriental theme, Fermin, who confessed to being partial to Chinese food, also included subjects such as dragon dance and tea party scenes in his line-up.

Green Halo Cafe, which offers a vegan menu at Cubao X, has also sponsored a number of art exhibits. Prior to Daniel “Palma” Tayona’s pen-and-ink collection that opened on December 20, Green Halo featured “Labyrinth of Blooms” by Katrina Pallon. The debut exhibit included photographs and paintings by the artist, in whose works we see the influences of French art nouveau, Asian textile prints and patterns, and Venetian masks come into play.

Truly, these restaurants are telling us that man does not live by bread alone. He also needs the finer aspects of life, art included.

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