The town of Sta. Teresita, Batangas Province, Southern Part of the Island of Luzon, Philippines has been known for it's primitive crude statuaries of "santos" or saints molded, casted, painted and sold house-to-house to the largely Catholic Filipino population.
In recent years, with computerization and availability of technology, the crudely manufactured and painted handiwork evolved. There is now some quality-control and more malleable, modern materials such as resins and fiberglass are now being utilized.
From these old, traditional workers - Michael Semana has been born. His parents owned the shop and sold the figurines in their store in front of their home along the national highway in Sta. Teresita, Batangas Province.
His parents sent him to Engineering school, but instead of looking for employment, he decided to improve on the craft he grew up with. He now produces sculptures and one-of-a-kind furniture and decors made of fiberglass-and-wood and some other combinations.
Through the help of friends, his products, along with the work of some painters from Taal, Batangas has been displayed this August 19-20 at the SM Batangas City. Some of his other works are also on display at the Home Centre in Fiesta World Mall in Lipa City.
Michale Semana is one of the Incorporators and officers of the Philippine Action Group for Social Responsibility, Inc. The PhilAction Group has been registered this May, 2010 as a non-profit, non-government organization whose aim is engage middle managers, supervisors, rank-and-file workers, entrepreneurs, artists and ordinary workers, even the OFWs into working together for the enhancement of the skills, productivity, and quality of work of fellow Batanguenos and fellow Filipinos. The organizaiton has now four existing groups: The Media Group, the Training Group, the Good Governance Group, and the Artists Group.
To help budding artists and contribute to the work of the Philippine Action Group for Social Responsibility, their e-mail address is philippineaction - both with gmail and yahoo.