Julius Legaspi (b. 1976) began his artist’s journey at the age of 11 when he attended painting workshops led by Fernando Sena in his hometown in Bulacan. He would later apprentice under Mr. Sena and become an assistant workshop instructor. Legaspi pursued a Fine Arts degree major in Visual Arts at the University of the Philippines. He is known for his ceremonious still life and theatrical figurative in soft pastels. His depictions of everyday domestic life have also been described as dramatic, owing to his masterful manipulation of light. He gained influences in the works of Rembrandt, Gustav Klimt, Alvaro Castagnet, Joseph Zbukvic, Fernando Amorsolo, Bueno Silva, and his mentor Fernando Sena. Driven by his passion for the medium, he founded the Philippine Pastel Artists (PPA) in 2015 to promote awareness and appreciation of pastel painting and to recognize world-class Filipino pastel artists. Legaspi’s skills were honed because of Mr. Sena’s passion to bring art to those who have no access. Shaped by poverty, just like his mentor, Julius is committed to continue Mr. Sena’s legacy by paying it forward and providing the same opportunity to others.
The interpretation of Nuestra Señora de la Salud by Julius Legaspi has a strong message of faith. The subject and available materials such as rust post a challenge to the watercolorist/pastel painter. Still, he was able to render the depiction of the Lady beautifully, with his strong reliance on his faith and craft, culminating on the interweaving of the physical and spiritual. The rust throughout the painting, which almost diminishes the subject, signifies that with one's strong faith and belief, the structure will soon be prevented from further deterioration, with the community's help.