The UST Medicine Class of 1981 celebrated their 40th anniversary through an exhibition of their own artworks in various media. The exhibition, titled “GILAS, PUSO, BUHAY: When Doctors Paint”, raised funds for the benefit of the indigent patients at the UST Hospital and opened at the Main Gallery of the UST Museum on November 16, 2022.
More than forty years have transpired since the graduates of UST Medicine Class 1981 left the portals of UST. Some chose to stay but a number became part of the medical diaspora, each seeking his own place in various fields of medicine. After spending most of their productive professional lives in intense academic and clinical work, this time, either retired or nearing retirement, the members of the class return to a lost love: ART.
By rekindling their interest in art, they became young again, playing with shapes and colors. By drawing and painting, they rediscovered a part of themselves that was buried and overtaken by the rigors of medical training and practice. For them, it was like breathing a new kind of air and being filled with a sense of awe and wonder in their late years.
“In the play of art we regain the wit and the courage to deal with the harshness or dullness of daily life. We turn to art, not to escape but to allow the mind to rest, to release the inner spirit of intuition in play, and thus find our way through our dark labyrinths,” renowned Filipino poet Merlie Alunan once said.
It is in this spirit that the Magilas Art Group was formed during the time of the COVID-19 pandemic. After more than a year of learning from each other and sharing their experiences and challenges in painting and drawing online, the class agreed to celebrate its Ruby anniversary by mounting an exhibition, not only to feature their artworks, but to raise funds for the benefit of the indigent patients needing surgery at the UST Hospital Clinical Division as well.
The opening of the exhibition was graced by the presence of UST Secretary General Rev. Fr. Louie Coronel, O.P.; UST Faculty of Medicine and Surgery (USTFMS) Regent Rev. Fr. Angel Aparicio, O.P.; USTFMS Dean Dr. Ma Lourdes Domingo-Maglinao; UST Hospital Director Dr. Charito Malong-Consolacion; Department of Surgery Chairman Dr . David Bolong; immediate past president of the UST Medical Alumni Association Dr. Jo Mariano; Thomasian Class 1981 president Dr. Conrad Manalad; over-all coordinator in the preparation of the event Dr. Isaias Lanzona; as well as class officers and members of the Thomasian medical community.