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There are golden nuggets popping up throughout the month of October during the exhibition run of the Philippine Gold Exhibition from through Jan. 3, 2015.  A series of cultural programs make up the motherlode of Filipino American culture programming.  Asia Society is located at 725 Park Avenue and 70th Street in New York City.  For more info, visit



Saturday, Oct 3,11AM 

Kicking off the Filipino American History Month, “Encounters with Early Asian Gold, a symposium on the role of gold in trade and culture in pre-colonial Asia, will be held on at Asia Society.Held in conjunction with the exhibition, Philippine Gold: Treasures of Forgotten Kingdoms, this symposium features new scholarship that reassesses understanding of Asian peoples in the context of gold trade and movement. Noted historians, art historians, and archaeologists present papers and discuss findings that impact our understanding of cultural interaction in Asia between the tenth and thirteenth centuries, before the period of sustained contact with western colonial powers.

Confirmed speakers and discussants at this one-day symposium include exhibition co-curators Florina H. Capistrano-Baker and Adriana ProserMJ Louise A. Bolunia, chief archaeologist at the National Museum, Philippines; John Guy, Florence and Herbert Irving Curator of South and Southeast Asian Art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art; Helen I. Jessup, independent scholar and President of Friends of Khmer Culture; Francois Louis, Associate Professor of Chinese Art and Material Culture at the Bard Graduate Center in New York; Amy G. Poster, Curator Emerita, Asian Art, Brooklyn Museum and Interim Consulting Gallery Director, Japan Society and Cherubim Quizon, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Seton Hall University. 


Fridays in October, 8PM 

On Fridays in October, Join us Friday nights at Asia Society for free museum admission and a pop-up food bar featuring local Filipino guest chefs!  You can get your Filipino food fix at the Pop-Up Filipino Food Bar. Free Museum admission Appetizers and small plates with wine/beer, available for purchase.


Tuesday, Oct. 13, 6PM 

This fall marks the second year of a truly impactful Asia Society event - the Asia Game Changer Awards and Gala Dinner at the United Nations.  Asia Society will honor the dreamers and leaders of our world making a positive impact on the future of Asia at the United Nations. This year Manny Pacquiao - philanthropist, world famous professional boxer, and member of the Philippines House of Representatives - has been selected as the 2015 Asia Game Changer of the Year! The Asia Game Changer Awards are designed to fill a vital gap, identifying and honoring true leaders making a positive contribution to the future of Asia. These inspiring men and women represent the spectrum of achievement - those who have led from positions of power, as well as those who have done so from ground - level laboratories of innovation.


Saturday, Oct. 21, 6PM 

Designer Sale Event:   Bea Valdes Handbags & Jewelry.

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.  Bea Valdes grew up in Manila, in a family that has been in the fine jewelry trade for three generations. Having studied creative writing and interior design, Bea went on to specialize in interior design, creating accessories as a hobby. Her designs quickly caught the eye of discerning women seeking something distinctively luxurious. As an artist and writer, Bea weaves stories into her collections. Her pieces are not just accessories, but “symbols of a heroic feminine narrative.” Taking inspiration from various cultures, Bea has received global recognition as a creative architect of distinctive luxury goods. Bea designs and produces her pieces in her Manila based studio, working with modern Filipino artisans. She maintains a focus on traditional embroidery, supporting local artisans and their craftsmanship, while shining a light on the Philippines as a design hub.


Saturday, Oct. 21, 6:30-7:30PM, Queens 

There is a FREE Asia Society in Queens Event.  The Curator Talk: Philippine Gold: Treasures of Forgotten Kingdoms will take place at the Queens Library at 41-17 Main Street in Flushing, Queens.  Dr. Adriana Proser will join Queens Library to discuss the stunning gold treasures from the Philippines that are not only historically significant, but which demonstrate a rich cultural heritage.  Before the Spanish colonized the Philippines, little-known kingdoms flourished in the region. Philippine Gold: Treasures of Forgotten Kingdoms, on display this fall at Asia Society, showcases recently excavated objects that highlight the unprecedented creativity, prosperity and sophisticated metalworking tradition of the precolonial period. This program is part of the "Asia Society in Queens" series, a partnership with Queens Library.


Monday, Oct. 24, 8PM 

Ma-Yi performs “Alamat: Stories of Philippine Gold” at Asia Society.  Using movement, songs, and a striking visual style, Ma-Yi Theater Company has created a compelling evening of theater that retraces the evolution of Philippine Gold as uniquely Filipino. Written for the stage by Ralph B. Pena,Alamat: Stories of Philippine Gold tells the story of gold before colonization by the West.  “Alamat” is the Filipino word for legend or folktale. The Philippines is rich with these mythical tales that are unique to each region of the country. The Ilocanos, the Tagalogs, the Visayans, the peoples of Maguindanao all have unique stories about how this precious metal has become part of their collective stories.  Based on stories compiled by Mabel Cook Cole’s "Philippine Folk Tales," Alamat weaves together various indigenous myths about creation, nature, and tribal histories.


Wednesday, Oct. 28, 12 Noon 

Designer Sale Event:  Rafe Totengco Minaudiere Clutches.  Totengco melds quality with style in his signature evening bags, featuring indigenous Filipino materials that blend an uptown sophistication with a downtown edge.  Rafé Totengco is recognized in the industry as being one of the most acclaimed of a new generation of American-International fashion designers. His fresh, exciting accessories blend an uptown sophistication with a downtown edge. Skilled at balancing fashion with function, Rafé is a designer who knows how to meld quality with style and comfort with function. Rafé accessories add a finishing “exclamation point” to any ensemble.


Friday, Oct. 30, 8PM 

Voicing The Ancestral Sacred: Grace Nono and Ensemble. 

Grace Nono is one of the most renowned female vocalists in the Philippines. She hails from the area in the Southern Philippines where the Butuan kingdom was located. Nono champions traditional Filipino music while simultaneously striving to make traditions accessible to a new generation.

Today, a growing number of younger generation Filipinos and Filipino descendants both in the homeland and in the diaspora are rediscovering and revisiting what remains of these ancestral sonic landscapes. They are reclaiming these voices’ sacredness as points of communion between ancestors and offspring, and between peoples from different ancestries coming together in the spirit of dialogue and mutual respect.


In Voicing the Ancestral Sacred,” we witness a gathering of ancestrally-informed voices from selected areas in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao (the Philippines’ three island clusters); indigenous, Muslim, and Christian populations; hinterland, rural and urban communities. Fragments of these sonic landscapes will be re-contextualized within a new urban landscape. We invite you to listen, as well as break open the walls of your ears, hearts, and minds.

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