This year marks the birth centennial of National Artist for Literature N.V.M. Gonzalez. To celebrate his life and works, the University of the Philippines’ Department of English and Comparative Literature will hold an exhibit and launch the collection A Wanderer in the Night of the World: The Poems of NVM Gonzalez on 29 September 2015 (Tuesday), 1:00 to 4:00 PM, at Claro M. Recto Hall, Bulwagang Rizal (Faculty Center), UP Diliman. Before he was recognized for his fiction, Gonzalez was first published as a poet. It is hoped that the exhibit and this book, edited by esteemed professor emeritus Dr. Gémino H. Abad, together with the exhibit, will introduce Gonzalez to a new generation of readers.
Nestor Vicente Madali Gonzales was a prizewinning writer, journalist, and teacher. He was born on 8 September 1915 in Romblon, Romblon. Gonzalez’s most renowned works include the novels The Winds of April and The Bamboo Dancers, the short story collection The Bread of Salt and Other Stories, and the essay collections Work on the Mountain and The Novel of Justice: Selected Essays. His work is known for its distinct focus on the Filipino way of life. His awards include numerous Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature, the First Commonwealth Literary Contest in 1940, the Republic Cultural Heritage Award in 1960, the Gawad CCP Para sa Sining in 1990, and the Centennial Award for Literature in 1998.
Gonzalez taught at UP for 18 years. He fostered UP’s creative writing community by holding the first writers’ workshop at his home in Area I. He founded the Diliman Review and was a member of the board of advisers of Likhaan, UP’s Creative Writing Center. He was also the first president of the Philippine Writers’ Association. He was conferred an honorary doctorate from UP in 1987 and became its first international writer in residence in 1988. In 1997, he was named National Artist for Literature.
Gonzalez passed away on 28 November 1999.