MANILA, Philippines – The Phillipines’ bet, 14-year-old Wika Nadera, won the silver medal in the art leg of the 17th Asian Games. The Filipino teenager won second place for the country at the conclusion of the event at Incheon, Korea, last week.
Losing to Kazakhstan’s representative who took home the gold medal, Nadera received $3,000 cash along with the silver medal. He ranked above the representatives from United Arab Emirates, Bhutan, Myanmar, and Vietnam.
“I learned a lot from this experience. This is my first time to win a major award in an art contest… I am super-glad to represent not just the Philippine High School for the Arts, but the entire country,” said Nadera in a statement reported by GMA News.
Nadera, who is a student at the Philippine High School for the Arts at present, was a former student of Fernando Seña in painting and Jay Javier in photography. He views painting as a hobby and plans on taking architecture in the future.
The teenager was picked by Philippine Olympic Committee-Philippine Sports Commission (POC-PSC) last July, after his watercolor piece garnered 92 percent approval from judges. After winning the qualifying competition, he became the Philippines’ representative for the art leg of the Asian Games.
Nadera revealed that he regrets not winning the gold, but swore to develop his abilities in order to place better in upcoming competitions.
“I want to join more competitions. They taught me a lot. More or less, they tell me if I’m doing the right thing or not. I wish to enter contests while I’m still young. I know, time will come when I can’t be allowed to participate anymore,” he said in the statement.
Nadera, who is now on 8th grade, said he’d like to try sports, but only those that do not pose a threat to his eyes and hands, because his experience in the Asian Games inspired him to widen his horizons.
“As a visual artist, I wish that we will be given more exposures like this. I want to study more, here and abroad, about the arts and culture… Hopefully, this will help me become a better architect in the future,” he said.