“Uplift,” Ferdinand Cacnio’s sculpture located in front of the University Theater at UP Diliman, has attracted controversy given its similarity to Elisabet Stienstra’s “The Virgins of Apeldoorn,” a public installation that has been on display since 2001. Cacnio has since denied plagiarizing Stienstra’s work, and people have been arguing about whether “Uplift” is a copy or not, though the arguments on social media have already died down somewhat.
But I’m not here to jump into the fray. I’m just here to show you the sculpture, which we checked out a few days ago. Barring the controversy and my opinion about the attitude expressed by the woman, it is a pretty interesting work that’s worth a visit.
Once you’re done looking at “Uplift,” head over to the neighboring installation, which is “Ang Pagbabalik Lupa” by Anton del Castillo. It was part of the university’s Sansinukob exhibit for National Arts Month and was originally located at the UP Amphitheater, but its new home is close to the Carillon. According to the Diliman UPDate Online, “This creation represents Lupa-on, based on the story “The Departure of Gods” of the Kalinga. It shows the separation of gods and people through setting a scenario of a woman hesitating while descending the stairway.”
And while you’re here, you should take a look at all the other installations throughout the campus as well.