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Angono, Rizal’s Higantes Showcase Filipino Culture & Artistry in Korean Cultural Festival in South Korea

Angono’s higantes is the giant effigies that originated in Angono, Rizal, known for the famous Higantes festival. The giant effigies took part in the Itaewon Global Village Festival (Korean Cultural Festival) in South Korea to showcase Filipino culture and artistry.

The higantes were handcrafted by a group of local artists in Angono town in Rizal Province. They made different versions of these iconic figures from the Philippines for this year’s Itaewon Global Village Festival in South Korea.

Angono's Higantes
Photo Credit: ANGONO, RIZAL TOURISM OFFICE

Based on the article of Inquirer.net, the giant effigies were national hero Jose Rizal in a black suit, boxing champion and senator Manny Pacquiao in a pair of red boxing jerseys, and Miss Universe titleholders Pia Wurtzbach and Catriona Gray. All giant effigies iconic figures are wearing a “hanbok” (traditional South Korean dress) and strutted down the streets of Seoul last week.

Angono's Higantes
Photo Credit: ANGONO, RIZAL TOURISM OFFICE

Itaewon Global Village Festival held in Yongsan-gu, Seoul is a cultural festival held in Itaewon, Korea. The festival annually features South Korea’s heritage but also cultures from other parts of the world.

Angono, also known as the art capital of the Philippines, was invited by the Philippine embassy in South Korea to send its higantes to the popular Korean parade held on Oct. 12. “We carried the name of Angono, but also represented arts from the Philippines,” said by Angono tourism information officer Bernard Laca Jr.

Angono's Higantes
Photo Credit: ANGONO, RIZAL TOURISM OFFICE

According to the article, it was the first time, that Angono’s higantes were flown overseas on an invitation by an embassy. A couple of times in the past, the higantes were featured in Japan or the United States, but in private art festivals, he said.

He said it was believed that people used the higantes as a form of protest or mockery against the Spanish landlords. “There was this version [of history], which says that the higantes started way back Spanish (colonial times),” Laca said in a telephone interview on Tuesday.

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