Celebrating Womenin Art at Rustan’s GRLPWR 2024 - Rustan's The Beauty Source



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Celebrating Womenin Art at Rustan’s GRLPWR 2024

Featuring Clara Benin, Zarah Juan, and Elle Battung

The Rustan’s GRLPWR event is back on its 5th year to celebrate Women’s Month. This year’s event puts special focus on women in art, recognizing their achievements and contributions as Filipina artists who continue to pave the way for gender equality and artistic freedom. The Rustan’s GRLPWR event brings their message even further by collaborating with three exceptional artists from different fields—each adding their own creative spark at the upcoming event on March 7 at 5 PM, at Rustan’s Shangri-La.

Introducing three remarkable artists featured during the event: Clara Benin, the country’s indie darling for her enchanting melodies; Zarah Juan, an esteemed fashion accessory designer and social entrepreneur; and Elle Battung, a versatile freelance illustrator and maker. Each artist brings a unique touch to the event: Clara Benin serenades the guests with her enchanting performance, Zarah Juan unveils the exquisite Mobula Bag, inspired by the manta ray, and
crafted exclusively for Rustan’s The Beauty Source, and Elle Battung graces the occasion with a mural.

Delving into the unique fusion of art and beauty showcased at Rustan’s GRLPWR 2024, distinct from previous runs, it explores how the featured artists inspire through their perspectives. Their work not only promotes women’s empowerment and beauty but also encapsulates the essence of what Rustan’s GRLPWR event stands for.

Get to know Rustan’s GRLPWR 2024’s featured women in art

Clara Benin: Serenading Souls, Captivating Hearts

The indie darling of the Philippines, Clara Benin mesmerizes audiences with her soul-stirring vocals and melodic acoustic guitar, leaving an indelible mark on the music landscape. As an inaugural artist under Sony’s regional label OFFMUTE, Clara’s serene demeanor and heartfelt performances have captivated audiences across Southeast Asia and beyond, solidifying her position as a prominent figure in the music scene.

Reflecting on art’s role in empowerment and self-expression, especially for women, Clara shares, “Art, particularly through music and songwriting, has served as a profound form of therapy for me, allowing me to both express and understand myself on a deeper level. I dream of inspiring young female musicians to find their voice and express themselves through music.” She also acknowledges the importance of increased recognition for women artists, stating, “Growing up, I didn’t have as many female artists to look up to, so it’s truly inspiring to witness more women being spotlighted in the arts, and I hope our visibility empowers and inspires young girls pursuing their artistic passions.” Clara’s advice to aspiring female artists is simple yet profound: “Believe in your art and your originality, and don’t be afraid to be yourself!”

Zarah Juan: Empowering Artisans and Women in Art

An accessory designer renowned for her eponymous brand, Zarah Juan epitomizes sustainability and Filipino craftsmanship in the world of fashion. “After years of being a product developer for various companies and acquiring numerous skills along the way, I faced the challenge of finding my own voice in representing myself as a designer. However, it became clear to me that my true essence as a designer lies in my ability to create meaningful things by involving artisan communities in the process.” For Zarah, designing transcends being just a profession; it has become a calling in her life.

When it comes to gender equality in the arts, Zarah asserts, “Advocating for gender equality in the arts is essential because limiting talent to only men restricts the potential for creativity and innovation.” She envisions a world where both men and women have equal opportunities to thrive, emphasizing that “when both men and women have equal opportunities to thrive in the arts, society as a whole flourishes.”

To young or aspiring female artists seeking to make their mark in the art scene, Zarah offers advice: “Embrace the journey of self-discovery,” she encourages, “recognizing and embracing both the positive and negative aspects, and use it as inspiration to express yourself through your art.” Zarah emphasizes the importance of stepping out of one’s comfort zone and cultivating discipline and mastery to achieve excellence in one’s craft. By embodying these qualities, she believes, “you can create impactful and meaningful art that resonates with the world and leaves a lasting impression.”

Elle Battung: Small Girl in a Big World

Introducing Elle Battung, a seasoned freelance illustrator and maker based in Laguna, Philippines, whose artistic journey is deeply intertwined with her upbringing and aspirations. “I have creatives as parents, so they always nurtured the artist in me,” Elle reflects. Her love for illustration stemmed from childhood dreams of illustrating children’s books, a passion that continues to shape her unique style. “My style is deeply influenced by children’s literature and those elements of curiosity, hope, and magic,” she shares.

Elle’s artistic style serves as a reflection of her personal journey as a woman in the world of art, embodying themes of tenderness and strength. “My artistic style is very floral and girly, with a lot of those elements repeated in my work,” Elle explains, “A recurring theme in my illustration is being a small girl in a big world, which is how I feel most of the time.” However, amidst this sentiment, she emphasizes the importance of “softness” and the ability for women to be both strong and gentle. “I think my work reflects that tenderness and feeling,” she concludes. Looking towards the future, Elle envisions a world where women artists continue to carve out space for themselves while inspiring others to do the same. “I hope that more and more girls will grow up seeing this and knowing that their point of view is so important,” she expresses, “I want to keep creating hopeful work that reminds people that tenderness and vulnerability are important.” As she contributes to this narrative, Elle remains committed to empowering women and fostering a community where creativity knows no bounds.

In conclusion, Rustan’s GRLPWR 2024 encapsulates a profound fusion of beauty and self-care, echoing the intimate routines of its featured artists. Zarah Juan underscores the significance of self-care on the artistic path, affirming “Taking care of yourself is just as important as giving your best in your artistic journey. By establishing a skincare routine that includes proper cleansing, moisturizing, and sun protection, you prioritize self-care and ensure that you present the best version of yourself to your audience.” Clara Benin’s skincare and makeup regimens serve as acts of self-expression and self-love, with beloved brands like Clinique, NARS, and Heroine Make enhancing her daily ritual. Meanwhile, Elle Battung finds empowerment in her signature red lipstick, Red Carpet from Bobbi Brown—a staple for occasions demanding elegance. Altogether, these practices epitomize a journey embracing both inner and outer beauty, venerating the essence of self-appreciation and self-expression.

Take part in GRLPWR 2024 by registering at https://bit.ly/GRLPWR-ResortToBeauty.

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