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Monday, April 15, 2024

Instituto Cervantes’ Día del Libro: Celebrating the Passion for Books at Ayala Triangle

Wazzup Pilipinas!?

In anticipation of the World Book Day, on Saturday April 20, 2024, from 9 am to 11 pm, Instituto Cervantes de Manila, the Embassy of Spain, Ayala Land and Make it Makati invite visitors to the Ayala Triangle Gardens to Día del Libro, an exciting jam-packed day with a variety of activities that promote the joy of reading.

From fiction to non-fiction, poetry to prose, thousands of books will be up for grabs around Instituto Cervantes’ premises in Ayala Triangle. Día del Libro will feature Manila’s top bookstores and publishing houses that will be selling a wide array of books at a 20% discount. Following the tradition in Spain, each book purchase will come with a free rose. Apart from the book market, visitors to the Día del Libro will get to join poetry recitals, free Spanish classes, book presentations, street art, games, exhibits, storytelling sessions, Spanish food, as well as fun activities for the children.

First introduced in Manila by Instituto Cervantes in 2006, the tradition of Día del Libro began in Barcelona, Spain. To the present, the tradition is commemorated on St. George’s Day (23 April), during which Spanish people exchange roses and books. This date also honors two of history’s greatest writers – Miguel de Cervantes and William Shakespeare – who coincidentally died on the very same day, April 23, 1616. These significant incidents prompted the UNESCO to declare April 23 as “World Book and Copyright Day” to instill the love of reading among the youth and to promote respect for the rights of authors over their works. April is also the birth month of the classic Filipino poet Francisco Balagtas, and to honor him the National Commission for Culture and the Arts declared April as National Literature Month.

Among the activities of Día del Libro 2024, the inauguration of the WTA Open Library stands out. Thanks to the collaboration between the WTA Architecture and Design Studio, Ayala Land, and Instituto Cervantes, this charming library will revive at Ayala Triangle Gardens a highly successful cultural project --a space where books are exchanged altruistically.

Another of the highlights enriching Ayala Triangle during Día del Libro will be the Paseo de la Poesía, a street adorned with Filipino, Spanish, and Latin American poems. More than one hundred authors will be sharing their poems, creating a rich tapestry of literary expression.

For those who want to develop their artistic skills, Instituto Cervantes has prepared the drawing workshop Dibujo Makati, conducted by the Spanish leading illustrator Enrique Flores. Free registration here on a first como, first served basis:

In this edition, to commemorate the Day of Miguel de Cervantes, Instituto Cervantes is challenging visitors to join a Quixotic attempt: to handwrite Don Quixote de La Mancha. The final hand-written book will be deposited in the Library of Instituto Cervantes. People interested in taking part in the writing of Don Quijote can register here:, or join on the same day with no prior registration. Participants in the handwriting chain will receive a rose.

Through the 3rd Recital of Filhispanic Poetry, Instituto Cervantes is inviting poetry lovers to recite verses written in Spanish by Filipino poets. All the recorded recitations will be compiled in a video that will be posted in Instituto Cervantes Youtube channel at the end of April 2024. Interested poetry aficionados can register here:

Thanks to the collaboration of publishing houses, visitors will have the opportunity to meet authors who will be signing their works. Book lovers will also have the chance to attend book presentations organized by some publishers. Please check program schedule at

As one of the perks of Día del Libro, Instituto Cervantes will offer free Spanish classes, and a free access to AVE, Instituto Cervantes’ self-learning platform, for those enrolling on 20 April.

And to cap it off, Instituto Cervantes will close Día del Libro 2024 with a live concert by two leading Filipino rock bands, from 8:00pm.

Whether you're a lifelong reader or just discovering the joy of books, World Book Day 2024 at the Instituto Cervantes de Manila is a day to celebrate the power of words to connect us with each other and to the world around us. Join Día del Libro at Ayala Triangle and experience a jam-packed evening of excitement. And for this year’s celebration, Instituto Cervantes will be giving out hundreds of books – for FREE!

Día del Libro 2024 is organized by Instituto Cervantes de Manila, in collaboration with the Embassy of Spain in the Philippines, AECID, Ayala Land, Make it Makati, and the embassies of Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Panama and Venezuela, Harper Collins Ibérica, WTA Architecture and Design Studio, and the Spanish Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines. Among the participating publishing houses and bookstores are Ateneo University Press, Vibal Publishing, FEU Publishing House, Milflores, Anvil, Ortigas Foundation, Biblio, Everything’s Fine, Kahel Press, Tawid, and Gachapress.

Admission to all Día del libro activities is FREE on a FIRST-COME, FIRST-SERVED basis. For more information about Instituto Cervantes de Manila’s Book Day 2024, visit the pages or

For further information about the cultural program of Instituto Cervantes de Manila, please visit their website (, or follow Instituto Cervantes on the following social media pages: (Facebook: InstitutoCervantesManila; Instagram: institutocervantesmanila).

“Making the Invisible Visible” with Bird Window Strike PH

(Left to right) Panels featured in the “Making the Invisible Visible” pop-up exhibit. Bird displays serve as an example of the harm caused by window collisions. (Photo credits: Bird Window Strike PH & Marmol, 2024)

Wazzup Pilipinas!?

In February 2024, the UP Diliman College of Science Institute of Biology (UPD - CS IB) housed the “Making the Invisible Visible” pop-up exhibition of the citizen science project, Bird Window Strike Philippines.

Featuring the feathered remains of unlucky birds that had collided into windows, the displays served as poignant and striking visuals for this strange, but common phenomenon. Infographics and posters provided possible solutions and detailed accounts of incidents from up to 290 citizen reports from all around the Philippines.

Bird Window Strike PH first started as a research initiative and passion project under Janina Castro of the Ateneo Institute of Sustainability, the school’s hub for sustainable development, and Jelaine Gan of The UP Wild, an online educational community raising awareness on UP Diliman’s wildlife and green spaces.

The two had long been avid bird watchers—or “birders”—when the idea formed after Janina rescued a Coppersmith Barbet that had struck a window in the Ateneo de Manila University. She realized that little to no research was being done on bird collisions with windows despite their somewhat common occurrence. Teaming up with Jelaine, the two discussed how they could bring more attention to this issue and what could be done to prevent further collisions.

Displays showcasing various installations that can help prevent window collisions, ranging from darker tinted glass, to stickers, to ropes and mesh. (Photo credit: Bird Window Strike PH, 2024)

Bird collisions with windows can happen when they are misled by either the reflections of trees and the sky on the glass surface or by the view of the environment through the glass. Based on studies by various researchers and the American Bird Conservancy (ABC) database, the most efficient means of prevention involved breaking up the reflection. This could be done by installing stickers at least 1 cm in size, ideally spaced around 5 cm apart. The “Making the Invisible Visible” pop-up exhibition showed other solutions, such as ropes and wire mesh screens for windows.

“[These solutions are] among the most effective, but this doesn’t mean that these are the only choices,” the Bird Window Strike PH team emphasized. “In the ABC database, there are a number of DIY solutions and commercial solutions that people can choose from.”

(The ABC database can be found here.)

Citizens from across the country aid in raising awareness on the endangerment of various species, as the Bird Window Strike PH regularly receives incident reports and photos—some of which were part of the exhibit. Pigeons (Columbidae), kingfishers (Alcedinidae), barbets (Megalaimidae), and pittas (Pittidae) were among the most common victims of window collisions.

“In particular, we get a lot of Common Emerald Dove (Chalcophaps indica) and Hooded Pitta (Pitta sordida) in the reports,” they explained. “We don’t know why these birds seem to be colliding more, but some of the explanations in literature are related to increased blue light pollution in cities and to birds’ behavior of moving around different forest patches.”

The citizen science and conservation initiative plans to set up more pop-up exhibitions in the future. By showcasing solutions through these displays and serving as an avenue for incident reports, they hope to reach more people and encourage them to take action in preventing any further accidents.

Keep an eye out for the Bird Window Strike PH’s next exhibit and work on their FB page.

By: Maria Alexandra Marmol

FDCP puts premium on film education

Wazzup Pilipinas!?

The Film Development Council of the Philippines will hold a Film Education Convention in September through its Academic Film Society, a nationwide association of schools, colleges, and universities involved in film education.

Newly appointed FDCP chairperson and chief executive officer Jose Javier Reyes revealed that the AFS “aims to bring together all the stakeholders in the shaping of film education in our country – from students, teachers, and audiences” as well as “professionals in the field for opportunities of networking, engagement, and conversation.”

Reyes described a recent gathering of AFS member schools as “a significant first meeting of the various chairpersons and representatives of different schools, universities and colleges offering Communication Arts, Media Arts, and Film programs in their respective institutions.”

Apart from Reyes and more than 30 representatives of AFS-registered institutions, also present during the general assembly to answer questions from the attendees were FDCP Education Division head Rica Arevalo, Education Consultant Seymour Sanchez, Project Development Officer Korina Dela Cruz, and Cinematheque Centre Manila Operations Supervisor Jen Lopez.

The new FDCP chair and CEO stressed that the AFS “will also be instrumental in hopefully providing venues for student filmmakers all over the archipelago to have access to the works of their peers regardless of language or region.”

The national agency, through the AFS, aims to nurture aspiring Filipino filmmakers by providing them access to training programs, financial assistance, and other forms of support.

The FDCP and AFS members talked about the progress of teaching film in educational institutions and forms of assistance that the schools may need. They also explored ways in which educators could receive support to improve their students’ understanding of film and enhance film education.

AFS offers funding grants ranging from 30,000 to 50,000 pesos through the Student Financial Assistance Program, which can be availed by those working on their thesis films or capstone projects.

In addition to the SFAP, member schools can also avail of film workshops, mentors and resource persons, access to media library, FDCP ratings and permits, school event promotions, and the use of cinematheque centers and JuanFlix; The FDCP Channel, among other benefits.

“FDCP prepares for the next generation of filmmakers and the upliftment of the Filipino moviegoing audience,” Reyes emphasized.

For many AFS members, their collaboration with FDCP marks a promising chapter in their journey to provide their students with enriching opportunities and support for their creative endeavors.
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