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Leandro Valencia Locsin

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Leandro V. Locsin was a Filipino architect, artist, and interior designer, known for his use of concrete, floating volume and simplistic design in his various projects. He was proclaimed a National Artist of the Philippines for Architecture in 1990 by the late former President Corazon C. Aquino.

Leandro V. Locsin was born August 15, 1928 in Silay City, Negros Occidental, a grandson of the first governor of the province. He later studied at the De La Salle Brothers in 1935 before returning to Negros due to the Second World War. He returned to Manila to study Pre-Law, before shifting to pursue a Bachelor's Degree in Music at the University of Santo Tomas. Although he was a talented pianist, he later changed again to Architecture, just a year before graduating. He was married to Cecilia Yulo, to which he had two children, one of whom is also an architect.

Diliman Catholic Chaplain, Fr. John Delaney commissioned Locsin to design a chapel that is open and can easily accommodate 1,000 people. The Church of the Holy Sacrifice is the first round chapel in the Philippines with the altar in the middle, and the first to have a thin shell concrete dome. The floor of the church was designed by Arturo Luz, the stations of the cross by Vicente Manansala and Ang Kiukok, and the cross by Napoleon Abueva, all of whom are now National Artists. Alfredo L. Juinio served as the building's structural engineer. Today, the church is recognized as a National Historical Landmark and a Cultural Treasure by the National Historical Institute and the National Museum respectively.

In his visit to the United States, he met some of his influences, Paul Rudolph and Eero Saarinen. It was then he realized to use concrete, which was relatively cheap in the Philippines and easy to form, for his buildings. In 1969, he completed what is to be his most recognizable work, the Theater of Performing Arts (Now the Tanghalang Pambansa) of the Cultural Center of the Philippines. In 1974, Locsin designed the Folk Arts Theater, which is one of the largest single span buildings in the Philippines with a span of 60 meters. It was completed in only seventy-seven days, in time for the Miss Universe Pageant. Locsin was also commissioned to build the Philippine International Convention Center, the country's premiere international conference building and the seat of the Vice Presidency.

The current building was dedicated in 2004, and was designed by the L. V. Locsin and Partners, led by Leandro Y. Locsin, Jr. Most of Locsin's work has been inside the country, but in 1970, he designed the Philippine Pavilion of the World Expo in Osaka, Japan. His largest single work is the Istana Nurul Iman, the official residence of the Sultan of Brunei.

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aleeshacallahan, January 4th, 2013
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