- Visual artist Vincent Navarro based in Baguio City died last February 16 at the age of 23
- The artist allegedly died due to complications after undergoing surgery
- He is known for using coffee grounds in a portrait series of Benguet coffee farmers
Artist Vincent Navarro, who is known for using coffee grounds in a portrait series of Benguet coffee farmers, died last February 16 at Baguio Medical Center at the age of 23.
The confirmation came from the artist’s mother, an article published by Rappler have disclosed.
Apparently, Vincent, the local artist who graduated from the University of the Philippines-Baguio with a degree in Fine Arts in 2012, started painting with the used coffee grounds to help against the build-up of garbage in Baguio’s landfills.
“These are the faces of farmers who toiled for the best-tasting and rich coffee beans,” he was quoted in his previous interview with Bulatlat about the portrait series as he dubbed his masterpiece as “a celebration of life.”
A protector of the environment, the young artist was reportedly inspired to create the portraits during his time helping out Benguet farmers with the Cordillera Green Network (CGN).
A breakthrough in his career took place in 2012 when he became one of the Philippine representatives for the Japan East-Asia Network of Exchange for Students and Youths (JENESYS); an exchange program that aimed to promote Asian solidarity.
Maggs Makalintal-Cabato, one of his closest friends, disclosed that he was also an active volunteer in Children’s International Summer Villages (CISV); a non-profit organization that aims to achieve peace through inter-cultural cooperation.
Another remarkable achievement took place in 2015 when the local artist received a grant from the Asian Cultural Council to do research and document contemporary art practices in New York.
An article written by Dumay Solinggay which was posted on the Facebook account of Cordillera Green Network, stated that the visual artist died due to surgical complications.
Reportedly, Vincent was admitted at the Baguio General Hospital on February 2 where he underwent colonoscopy and was diagnosed with chronic inflammation in the intestine. A bypass operation to remove the obstruction within his intestine was performed on February 15.
Vince was supposed to fly to New York last February 8, a few days before he passed on, to complete his residency as visual artist with Asian Cultural Council (ACC). At 23, he would have been among the youngest recipients of the residency award.