UP Artists Circle Fraternity

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UP Artists' Circle Fraternity
Motto: Service through Art
Nicknames: AC, Artists' Circle


Founded: May 22, 1972 at

University of the Philippines Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines

Recognized Symbols: Seal, Pin, Ace Mascot, White rose
Fraternity Type: Professional, University-based
HQ Amorsolo Hall, College of Fine Arts, UP Diliman
Core Values: Loyalty, Humility, Determination
Colors Gold , Royal Blue
Motto Service Through Art.
UP AC Official Website

The University of the Philippines Artists' Circle Fraternity, is a university fraternity for artists based in the University of the Philippines which shares a long history and association with the UP College of Fine Arts.[1]

Alumni of the Artists’ Circle Fraternity currently constitute a large portion of the UP College of Fine Arts faculty. It accepts into membership those who are practitioners of an art form and enrolled at any degree-granting unit of the University in Diliman and Baguio. When it was founded in 1972, The fraternity primarily focused on the visual arts but has since recruited members who focused in theater, literature, music, architecture and design. AC is regarded as an institution of notable accomplishment and reputation in the Philippine art scene. [2]

Pioneers of the UP Artists' Circle in 1972. Photo taken at the old amphitheater at the top floor of the University Library in Gonzales Hall now housing the University Archives
Some members of the UP Artists' Circle in 2008. Photo taken at the Amorsolo Hall, UP College of Fine Arts
Exhibit at the Vargas Museum 1990. Photo taken at the Vargas Museum, UP College of Fine Arts
Isandaang Taong Bukang Liwayway. Photo taken at the 2nd Floor of Palma Hall, College of Social Sciences and Philosophy, UP Diliman


  • The Fraternity assumed the duties of the local student council of the UP College of Fine Arts during the Martial Law era in the Philippines. Its elected executive committee also performed the functions of the council following the ban on all student organizations except for fraternities.[3]
  • AC Fraternity's official colors are Royal Blue and Gold.
  • AC Began the tradition of celebrating the "Fine Arts week" and "Lantern Parade After Party" in the University of the Philippines.
  • Held an annual art exhibit called "Kalipunan" from 2004-2010 in the tradition of previous other exhibitions by the Fraternity.
  • "Ace", The fraternity mascot is a baseball player.
  • Members of Batch '87-'92 of the Artists' Circle fraternity were among the very first members of the "UP Rowing Team" when it was founded by some members of the AC fraternity in 1993.
  • Established first unit outside UP Diliman with the installation of the UP Baguio Chapter in 2008.
  • Batches '90-'96 of the Fraternity painted the mural at the 2nd Floor of Palma Hall (formerly AS )in UP Diliman through a commission by the Office of Initiatives for Culture and the Arts and the host college.
  • The UP Artists' Circle Sorority founded in 1977 is its sister sorority, with whom they share a common history.
  • Other murals by the UP Artists' Circle can be seen at the lobby of Vinzons Hall, Kalayaan Dormitory, UP DMST complex[4]


The UP Artists' Circe is engaged regularly in different activities such as art exhibits, art workshops, parties, concerts, out-reach programs, art lectures and fora, sports activities and other social functions. It also maintains minimal involvement with campus politics as one of the recognized members of the Student Alliance for the Advancement of Democratic Rights in UP (STAND-UP) although individual members may take different stances in varying campus and national issues aside from the political line of the alliance. [5][6]

Alumni Foundation

Established during the 31st year of the Fraternity, the purpose of the Alumni Foundation is to aide in financing projects of the Fraternity and conduct its very own scholarship grants.The Artists' Circle Foundation is the fund-raising entity of A.C. Fraternity and its primary focus is to support the education, leadership and development of collegiate chapters, alumni chapters, individuals of the fraternity and deserving fine arts majors (non-members).

Types of grants

Fraternity foundations have asked whether grants serve exclusively charitable purposes when made for:

1. Scholarships to members of the fraternity
2. Leadership training classes for members of the fraternity

The AC Alumni Foundation is a charitable and educational tax-exempt organization, separate and independent from the Fraternity, whose express purpose is to serve as an educational funding resource for the undergraduate and graduate student members of the Fraternity through leadership initiatives. The Artists' Circle Foundation is preparing our young men to be the value-centered leaders to guide us in the 21st century.

The Foundation is led by a Board of Governors headed by a fixed-term president.


The Pioneer is a fraternity publication which seeks to reflect the Artists Circle experience by delivering news of both Resident and Alumni Corps of the Fraternity, individual members, and the hosts communities; by addressing current issues facing fraternities; by educating and entertaining those interested in the welfare of the Artists' Circle; and by serving as a historical record.

Art Exhibitions

Kalipunan is the Artists’ Circle Fraternity’s Annual Art Exhibit. It is a venue for advocating love for the arts and art education. Kalipunan is a joint project of faculty and resident members of the fraternity aimed at strengthening social awareness of various art forms and to lead an interest by student involvement for their growth. Some activities leading to the culminating art exhibit included workshops, art contests, cultural nights and parties in and out of campus. The campaign is aided by sponsors and advertisement through mass media and donations by the alumni. [7][8]

40th Anniversary in 2012

Campaign Logo

The motto of celebrations leading to the 40th Anniversary of the Artists' Circle is "Look Forward" and was launched in 2009 at the last installment of Kalipunan. The fraternity will showcase their rich history with an exhibit of collected memorabilia, and photograph blow-ups depicting tradition, songs and literature of the fraternity. Also included in the celebration are various other art exhibits, concerts, workshops, art fairs and a commemorative publication. All alumni of the UP Artists' Circle from all over the world are expected to join in the celebration.

UP College of Fine Arts Centennial

The year 2007 officially marked the centennial of the College of Fine Arts, one year ahead of the University's centennial on 2008. The fraternity is one of the most active alumni associations working closely with the college for the occasion.[9]

Notable members

Among its notable members are:

  • Ramon Jimenez '72, Advertiser, Department of Tourism Secretary (2011-2016)[10]
  • Benjamin Cabangis '74, painter, CCP Thirteen Artists Awardee (1978)
  • Neil Doloricon '74,  Former Dean of the College of Fine Arts, CCP Thirteen Artists Awardee (1990)
  • Leonardo Rosete '74, incumbent Dean of the UP College of Fine Arts
  • Mariano del Rosario '74, painter, CCP Thirteen Artists Awardee (1978)
  • Rock Drilon '74, painter and gallerist
  • Roberto Acosta '76, Metrobank Art and Design Excellence Award- Sculpture Program Grand Award (2016)
  • Popo San Pascual '78, painter, CCP Thirteen Artists Awardee (1988)
  • Prudencio 'Dengcoy' Miel '81, painter and cartoonist whose works have appeared in the New York Times an Straits Times of Singapore.
  • Bernardo Pacquing '84, painter, CCP Thirteen Artists Awardee (2000)
  • Ferdinand Doctolero '85, painter and Head of Fine Arts Department, Technological University of the Philippines
  • Mark Meily '87, multi-awarded film-maker and Palanca Prize-Winning writer
  • Dino Ignacio '95, digital artist, Webby Award Winner (1998)
  • Poklong Anading '95, multi-media artist, CCP Thirteen Artists Awardee (2006), winner of the Ateneo Art Awards (2008)
  • Ernest Concepcion '95, painter and CCP Thirteen Artists Awardee (2015)
  • Rodel Tapaya '97, painter and Signature Art Prize winner (2010), Thirteen Artists Awardee (2013)
  • Lex Marcos '97, scenic designer and stage actor
  • Andre Vocalan '00,  chef and owner of Angono Balaw-balaw restaurant, Gawad Natatanging Rizaleño (2017)
  • Tomas Leonor '04, of STEP Juan, volunteer who is walking all over the Philippines for children with cancer.
  • Cian Dayrit '08, multi-media Artist, CCP Thirteen Artists Awardee (2018), and winner of the Ateneo Art Awards (2017)