It has been 15 years since China-born Maningning Miclat, a poet of three languages, prize-winning visual artist, published book author, teacher and interpreter, passed on. Miclat, according to Julie Lluch, eminent sculptor and member of the board of trustees of the Maningning Miclat Art Foundation, Inc. (MMAFI), is “lithe, slim, graceful, Pinay na Pinay, yet very Asian.” She added, “very few are like her, with her intensity as a poet, as an artist, as a person. Young as she was, she really excelled in her art, in the visual and literary arts. She won top awards in her genre.”

To honor her, MMAFI, formed in 2001, has been organizing activities aimed at encouraging creativity, and recognizing, awarding and nurturing outstanding and talented young poets and artists below 28 years old, the same age when Maningning passed on. Alternately, poetry and painting competitions are held, poetry on odd, painting in even- numbered years.

National Artist for Literature Virgilio S. Almario knew Maningning very well as she was one of the few young girls who attended his Rio Alma Poetry Clinic in the late 1980s and early 1990s. “Maningning is admirable because even when she was still very young (17 or 18), she already showed her varied artistic talents,” Almario said. He quipped: “I don’t understand Chinese and I have not read much of her English poetry, but her poetry in Filipino is a notch above the others. And for a young visual artist, her paintings are amazing!” He added that the Maningning Award has created a beautiful niche, serving as a forum to discover young talents.

“It’s important to support the Maningning Awards not just because we honor Maningning but also because we are honoring young Filipino artists,” said Wendell Capili, Maningning’s undergrad professor at the University of the Philippines Diliman.
Capili further said: “The competition allows young artists to pursue their art seriously at an early age and commit to it. This is some kind of encouragement for them to commit to art. And our country needs to nurture cultural literacy to produce a generation of culturally literate Filipinos.”

This year, MMAFI is again calling on young poets 28 years old or younger to join the Maningning poetry competition consisting of 3 divisions – Filipino, English and Chinese.

An entry must consist of at least eight (8) but not more than twelve (12) poems for English and Filipino divisions, and at least five (5) but not more than eight (8) poems for the Chinese division. Authors may join all the divisions but can submit only one (1) entry in every division. All entries should be original in every language and not a translation of another entry.

Entries must be addressed to the Maningning Miclat Art Foundation, Inc. (MMAFI), Unit 200, 2nd Floor Mile Long Building, Amorsolo St., Legaspi Village, Makati City (Tel No. 816-7490 to 91) no later than 6:00 P.M. of April 15, 2015.

Grand winners in three divisions of the poetry competition will be awarded P28,000.00 cash prize each, together with a Julie Lluch sculpture trophy. The grand winners and the 2nd- and 3rd-prize awardees will each receive special hardbound editions of the Miclat books.

For more information, visit , . Email [email protected]