VAHHFI and the Metropolitan Museum of Manila spearheads a charity art event called Chapter 2: The Empty Chair Project

Visual Arts Helping Hands Foundation, Inc (VAHHFI) and the Metropolitan Museum of Manila partnered in putting up a charity art event called Chapter 2: The Empty Chair Project.

Chapter 2: The Empty Chair Project tackles the timely subject of Mental Health, and the idea that art can be a part of the healing process.

This year’s gathering serves as the VAHHFI’s inaugural launch and coming out event, following the success of its initial charity event in 2017. The previous exhibition aimed to raise funds primarily for visual artists’ welfare and hospitalization assistance, which resulted in the eventual creation of VAHHFI foundation.

VAHHFI challenged some of the best artists in the visual arts scene to interpret, translate, and realize what an empty chair means using Bo Concept and Casa Bella chairs as canvases. Each designer art chair concept embodies the message of “hope, kindness, and positivity to all.” With price starting at a hundred thousand pesos, every sale of an artist's one-of-a-kind masterpiece is expected to generate funds for VAHH’s medical endowment funds.

Selected mental health advocacy groups like Anxiety and Depression Support Philippines, Silakbo, Buhay Movement, and #MentalHealthPh will benefit from this fundraising event. Proceeds will also help support VAHHFI’s healthcare initiative for practicing visual artists and artist support practitioners like art critics, art professors, curators, and established gallery workers.

Furthermore, VAHHFI hopes to provide collectors the chance to purchase unique artworks through collectible chairs and also give them the opportunity to help not just the artists but also the professionals, who support the artists in the visual art ecosystem.

VAHHFI invited the media to a formal briefing at the Milky Way Cafe in Makati City last October 16, 2019, just in time for its launching.

VAHHFI founding member Daniel Dela Cruz, VAHHFI Chairman Dr Joven Cuanang, Dr Steve Lim, Tina Colayco of the Metropolitan Museum of Manila and two (2) young artists who participated in this year’s exhibition – Marc Aran Reyes and Ciron Seneres were present during the event. Ricky Francisco, who was tapped by the foundation to curate the exhibition, was also there.

Mr. Daniel Dela Cruz shared, “In as much as our foundation focuses on physical fitness, mental fitness should also be part of our regimen to protect and safeguard our overall well-being. We spend time and energy exercising and going to the gym, but we also need to remember to take time to relax, de-stress, and rest our minds and our soul. Art, and all creative endeavors, soothes the soul and nourishes it.”

Since April 2018, this charity program has been providing hospital assistance to artists and other art workers, like art writers, a museum director and a gallery owner who suffer ailments like thyroid cancer, recurrence of tumor, and kidney disease.

Some of the artists who contributed their time and talent for this charity event include Leo Abaya, Fruitjuice Factory Studio with Isabel and Alfredo Aquilizan, Annie Cabigting, Valeria Cavestany, Charlie Co, Louie Cordero, Jayson Cortez, Marina Cruz, Kawayan de Guia, Antipas “Biboy” Delotavo, Dexter Fernandez, Dino Gabito, Nona Garcia, Guerrero “RG” Habulan, Gregory Halili, Riel Hilario, NiloIlarde, Pete Jimenez, Erwin Leaño, Raul Lebajo, Luis Lorenzana, Gene Paul Martin, Jason Montinola, Leeroy New, Rando Onia, Jim Orencio, Bernie Pacquing, LynyrdParas, Richard Quebral, Marc Aran Reyes, Jose Tence “Bogie” Ruiz, Stanley Ruiz, Luis Santos, Ciron Señeres, Rodel Tapaya, and MM Yu.

An opening reception will be held on November 12, 2019 at the Metropolitan Museum of Manila at the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Complex along Roxas Boulevard, Manila to officially open the exhibit. Chapter 2: The Empty Chair Project will run from November 12, 2019 to January 31, 2020.

In your simple effort of buying a unique art piece, you help make a difference in the life of a local artist and extend help to those who need it.

Your donation is a caring way to raise mental health awareness while contributing to the survivors still fighting the battle in a powerful way.

Check out for details on how you can participate. You may also call +632 708 7828 or email for other information.


  1. my dream is to one day be capable of purchasing different paintings and art works of local artists. I always visit galleries and admire exhibits and displays.

  2. Mental health is a hot topic nowadays. Pressure is everywhere, especially in social media. Dapat sa schools natuturo na rin importance ng mental health.


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