Willi Red Buhay

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2011 interview with artist, author and designer Willi Red Buhay by Lauren Todd


Bio: Willi Red Buhay was a graduate of San Beda College and the University of Sto. Tomas. He was the first artistic director for design of the Cultural Center of the Philippines and the Folk Arts Theater, a position he held for fifteen years. He also held a teaching post at the University of the Philippines and his alma mater.

One of Manila’s celebrated design-artist-painters, Willi had staged over 300 productions from theater and cinema to gallery exhibitions. In 1970, he won the prestigious design competition for the Philippine Center in New York. It was the start of numerous design commissions from hotels, resorts and museums. His artworks are in private collections and institutions in Asia, Europe, North America, and the Vatican.

He received the Governor’s Award for Arts from Jim Edgar in 1993, the Most Outstanding Artist Overseas for Arts and Humanities and from the Philippine Government in 2004. He was also recognized by the city of Chicago for distinction and contribution to the Filipino-American community. He is the artist-in-residence of the Filipino American Community in Chicago. Concurrently, he holds the directorial post for arts and religious programs at the FACC-Rizal Center.

A fifth-generation in a family of artists, cultural leaders, and patriots, he currently lives and works in his Lakeshore home-studio.

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Willi Red Buhay bio