Founded in 2013 by Manila based patron Jam Acuzar, Bellas Artes Projects is a registered non-profit foundation that draws inspiration from the Rafael Enriquez y Villanueva mansion built in 1867. An artist himself, Enriquez y Villanueva donated this building, transforming it into Escuela de Bellas Artes, then by 1908it became the first campus of the University of the Philippines - School of Fine Arts located along Hidalgo Street, Quiapo. Since 2007, the mansion has been moved to Bagac, Bataan as part of Jose Acuzar's collection of antique houses called Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar.
Bellas Artes Projects is a not-for profit, non-collecting institution that supports and engages with art that is experimental, educational, and as accessible as possible to all audiences. In this regard, BAP opened in early 2017 a Manila space called Bellas Artes Outpost that produces four exhibitions a year with a free public programme and a reading room to inspire creative thinking and engagement with the arts. The Outpost aims to build a new audience of art enthusiasts by engaging them with the artistic process of BAP’s artists and artisans in residence.
Artist in Residence
In this spirit, and with a headquarters in the historical building from which its name is derived, Bellas Artes Projects is centered on supporting the production of contemporary artists, providing a space of experimentation and interdisciplinary collaboration with Filipino heritage building and craft techniques, largely through residencies on its campus at Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar. Past artists in residence include Hugo McCloud (USA), John C. Gonzales (USA) and Alwin Reamilo (Philippines). The foundation regularly collaborates with Filipino institutions such as the Museum of Contemporary Art and Design (MCAD), supporting the production of leading international artists such as Paul Pfeiffer and Michael Lin.