DING and Francey Pascual have an original map of the Philippine islands created in the 1500s.
Many would highlight such a priceless item in their homes, but in their case, the map is hanging in their walk-in bathroom.
“There’s no more place for them,” said Federico “Ding” Pascual, former president of Allied Bank and board of directors of the century-old Philippine National Bank (PNB), referring to his collection of antiques and artworks.
The couple started their collection back in the early 1980s when Ding was assigned by PNB to its Hong Kong branch.
Ding said his prized possession was the folder of Juan Luna’s early works as a student under Alejo Vera of Spain.
Ding got hold of the collection from the great grand daughter of Vera who decided to sell some of her great grandfather’s collection.
The folder included 13 drawings and studies sold at the Mexico Store in Madrid called Libros y Grabado Antiguas.
Over time the couple became regulars at Durán, the biggest auction house in Spain akin to Christie’s and Sotheby’s of Hong Kong.
But the very first find of the two had been bought one New Year’s Eve in Hong Kong in the early ’80s when Ding was assigned to the former British colony as head of PNB there.
He said they were walking amid the revelry when they saw a shop that was selling maps. Upon closer scrutiny, they saw the maps of the Philippines— four pieces. Since the prices were affordable they got all four.
The maps are now also in his walk-in closet.
Another great find of the Pascuals is a folder of the major botanical work of Agustinian friar Manuel Blanco—Flora de Filipinas.
Ding and Francey often went to London and would shop for art pieces. There they met National Artist Benedicto “BenCab” Cabrera.
The Pascual house has a painting of the four of them—the couple with their two kids dressed as farmers—by BenCab.
In the Pascual bedroom are art works created by the grandchildren. They stand alongside priceless works of art.
The Pascual home is simple, but the major works of arts and antiquity it holds makes it a veritable museum. The works contribute as well to domestic bliss.