Exquisite masterpieces inspired by the paintings of Filipino national artists was headlined in this year’s Red Charity Gala, the annual charity fashion show organized by society icon Tessa Prieto-Valdes and philanthropist Kaye Tinga.
The event which was held on October 18, 2014 at the Rizal Ballroom of Makati Shangri-La, aimed to raise bigger funds for the Philippine Red Cross and Assumption High School Batch 1981 Foundation. It featured Jesus Lloren’s 40-piece collection accentuating both architectural and soft and airy pieces inspired by Filipino paintings. “There was a lot of handwork with many of the pieces evoking a memorable event in Philippine history,” he shares.
His creations were inspired by the paintings of national artists including Fernando Amorsolo, Juan Luna, Victorio C. Edades, Félix Resurrección Hidalgo, and Vicente Manansala. “I want to translate the meanings of these paintings in the best possible way so that the clothes become sartorial tributes to our masters and our history as Filipinos,” said Lloren.
Lloren’s designs have been known for their immaculate combination of minimalism, symmetry, structure, and timeless elegance, not only in the country but in many countries around the world. Despite his success and achievements, he has been very much transparent in sharing his humble beginnings way back in 1998: “It was very tough. During the early years, I always dreaded the day the bills would arrive. Clients were very few.”
His triumph at the Philippine Young Designers Competition and Concours International des Jeunes Createurs in Paris became his stepping stone to succeed in the fast-paced environment of fashion and the arts. The abaca bodice that resembled a refined, shiny armour became his winning piece, which earned him a scholarship at the Ecole de la Chambre Syndicale de La Couture Parisienne touted as the alma mater of leading fashion designers such as Yves Henri Donat Mathieu-Saint-Laurent, Issey Miyake, and Valentino Clemente Ludovico Garavani.
His experiences and learning in Paris further honed his aesthetic vision thus prepared him for making a trademark in the mainstream local fashion. Upon returning to his homeland, he did not only create seemingly simple but technically intricate clothes, but also helped in bringing Filipino talent to a global level by leading the Young Designers Guild and the Fashion Design Council of the Philippines. He’s also known as the great mentor on Project Runway Philippines since its first episode in 2008 until its third season. For this designer, being able to contribute in shaping the future leaders in fashion is indeed the greatest form of giving back.
With a Filipino talent like Lloren on this year’s Red Charity Gala, there’s no denying that the annual event is now taken to new heights. This year’s gathering is all about the celebration of arts, glamour, and Filipino pride all for a cause.
The Red Charity Gala was directed by Ariel Lozada, with fashion styling by Noel Manapat, and hair and makeup by Patrick Rosas. The show was presented by Downy and Sunlife, supported by Bench, HSBC, Megaworld, Makati Shangri-la, and Lifestyle Asia. Special thanks to Coca-cola, Olay, Patchi, Remy Martin, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Philippine Star, Robert Blancaflor Group, Rustans, Swatch, and W17.