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Bacolod City, Philippines Saturday, January 11, 2014
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Portrait artist dies

Members of the Art Association of Bacolod-Negros will pay a tribute to Bacolod portrait artist Lorenzo “Lor” Sumagaysay, who passed away on January 4, at the Rolling Hills Memorial Chapels in Brgy. Mandalagan, Bacolod City at 5:30 p.m. today.

Sumagaysay, 74, of Brgy. Mansilingan, succumbed to peptic ulcer and was cremated the same day he died, his daughter, Ma. Mae Sumagaysay-Oriola, said yesterday.

Oriola said the ashes of her father will be transferred to the house of her brother, Paul, in La Castellana tomorrow and they have not yet scheduled his interment.

She said her father must have developed ulcers because when he was in the mood to paint, he did not want to be disturbed. She believes that he hid his ailment from them since he did not want to burden them.

Sumagaysay earned his way through La Salle College as a staff artist and was also considered a star “drawer” at the Bacolod City High School. He was also considered a “junior Amorsolo” and the pride of Negros, Oriola said.

As a working student of La Salle, he used to do backdrops for stage plays of multi-awarded Negrense film director Peque Gallaga. He also painted the portrait of St. John the Baptist de La Salle that hangs at the University of St. La Salle Bacolod, she said.

Before he died, her father was planning to hold a grand exhibit after having staged several solo exhibits.

He has done portraits of prominent families and personalities like Pope John Paul ll, Sen. Franklin Drilon, former Bacolod Bishop Camilo Gregorio, actress Susan Roces, the Agustins, Dizons, and Lizares, among others, she said.

Ma. Fe Sumagaysay-Cuesta said her father's mother, who loved him so much, died when he was just 3-years-old.

When he grew up, he could not recall her face so he tried his best to come up with her portrait. After that, he dedicated his time and built a career in portraiture and would trade his works with whatever he and his siblings needed until he started a family, she said.

Cuesta said her father later met AAB founder Edgardo “Budot” Lizares, who helped him find clients among prominent families in Negros and Manila, and his friend Lanibelle Javelosa who promoted his art.

Sumagaysay is survived by his wife, Isidora, and children Ma. Mae, Chris, Mary Ann, Ma. Fe and Paul.*CGS

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