What We Do
The Diorama of the Battle of Mactan is a project to illustrate the real events of the battle in the educational format of what happened between the forces of Magellan and Lapu-Lapu on April 27, 1521. Both antagonists in this 16th-century drama have been long misunderstood by our fellow countrymen because of the long-standing biases, sometimes disinterest in historical narratives and mostly from lack of true, historically accurate books on this subject until the publication of the book entitled “Ferdinand Magellan. The Armada de Maluco and the European Discovery of the Philippines.” This book, published in 2016, by Dr. Danilo Madrid Gerona, is the most comprehensive narrative of the historical saga of Magellan that is based on primary sources found in Spain and Portugal.
TAN PEDRO MONTECLARO (1850-1909) –Miagao’s “Man for all Seasons” and our first “Outstanding Miagaowanon” of the 20th Century. As we celebrate Tan Pedro’s birth anniversary this coming October 15th, I think Lorna Monteclaro Garon’s biography of Tan Pedro written decades ago best summarizes the man and his life of accomplishments.
During a private lunch with the visiting Nacional family in Sulu Garden sometime in April 2018, the first statement from Empee (Emperatriz Nacional Abagat) about her uncle Pedro stuck in my mind. She said, “Wherever uncle Pedro was, no matter what continent he might be in when someone asked where was from, uncle Pedro will always say that he was from Miag-ao.” I think that he missed his hometown, but destiny had other plans for him.
Love of country starts from the love of your barangay and your town. It is impossible to love without knowing much about what you love. The vast majority of today’s generation do not know their town. This is because our educators have no written information to enable them to teach our children about their history. Our teachers themselves know so little about the town beyond the general knowledge found on the internet. This section of Sulu Garden’s website is our attempt to help remedy this paucity of knowledge by compiling information about Miagao’s past.
Music was so important in the culture of the natives of the diverse islands that eventually became the Republic of the Philippines we know today. However, there are no records of what music was like in the Visayan Islands 500 years ago. We can make educated guesses based on musical instruments we know were used long before Magellan arrived. Read more… >>>
Poetry has a special part in the literary collection and publication of Sulu Garden Foundation because we believe that poetry has powerful energy excavated from the deepest emotions of the poets. It can influence society, widens our perspectives, and is a great way to turn deep thoughts into passionate lines. Thus, we are elated to share some poems contributed by our friends.
Before, during and after the launching of the diorama of the Battle of Mactan, Sulu Garden Foundation is organizing a series of art exhibitions, poetry and musical events that highlight this major event. An international exhibition is planned in cooperation with Kuntsverein Miagao (Art Club Miag-ao) featuring paintings, art installations, poetry and native music in celebration of this once-in-a-lifetime event.
Exhibitions and workshops are important activities of the Art Program at Sulu Garden. If you are an artist, we look forward to working with you. If you are an art enthusiast, please do come and see what our artists are doing and have done in the past by visiting the Exhibitions.
Miag-ao (Iloilo) is known as a university town because of UP Visayas campus and a UNESCO town because of Miag-ao Fortress Church as a World Heritage Site. But, there are a lot more about Miag-ao than these two institutions. Miag-ao’s 119 barangays extends from the mountains bordering Antique Province to the shores of Sulu Sea. There are rivers, meandering streams, waterfalls, innumerable hanging bridges, magnificent rock formations, hidden lakes, rice terraces, unique flora, pottery village, rare salt-making tradition, hablon fabrics, beautiful sunsets and a lot more.
We, at Sulu Garden, consider Cosplay an art form, a ‘performance art’ to be more precise. It is an art form that expresses a personal form of view, an alternative vision of one’s self, that is especially open for all to see. For this reason, we celebrate Cosplay as part of the artistic expression that fits the unique ambience of Sulu Garden.
The inevitable collateral damage of population growth and commercial development is the environment and people’s health. A major effort by Sulu Garden Foundation [SGF] is directed towards  preservation of virgin forests, rivers and estuaries;  identification and surveys of endangered plants and animals to develop conservation efforts in collaboration with local, national and international agencies.
Sulu Garden and Poseidon Sciences (www.poseidonsciences.com) continues to develop its R&D programs to develop better products in the fields of aquatic sciences, biomedicine and agriculture. Aquaponics is an emerging, environmentally-friendly opportunity which complements our strategic objectives in the long term. Based on the facilities of Sulu Garden, a nature center, in the town of Miagao (Province of Iloilo, Panay Island, Philippines), an aquaponics prototype system has been developed using locally available materials.
The pandemic has disrupted normal life and business throughout the world. Here, the town folks are experiencing the same hardships. Sulu Garden Foundation has been providing free meals to fisher folks and villages up in the mountains that are normally difficult to serve by the already stretched resources of the local government.