In celebration of World Smile Day, New York-based artist Rommel Rico, who is also known as Virrco, has released a limited-edition line of bags to raise funds for the beneficiaries from Smile Train Philippines – the local counterpart of the world’s largest cleft palette-focused organization, the Smile Train.
Rommel Rico is a nurse-turned-visual artist, whose inspiration to the limited-release Virrco Bags came from the passion and resiliency of Filipino women, thus the one-eyed Filipina, the signature Butterfly sleeves, and the signature smile.
Rommel Rico wanted to “ship” the idea of “art to cause” by creating a bag that will contribute to a meaningful cause, as the sales proceeds will go to the Smile Philippines, helping their beneficiaries who are born with a cleft.
This is a great cause as children who are born with a cleft lip or with a cleft palate may experience difficulty in breathing, eating, and speaking, thus affecting their whole being, may experience bullying and discrimination, and also affects their chance for better employment because of their condition.
Before Rommel Rico’s stint in visual arts, he previously worked as a physical therapist in New York. Virrco as many calls him, is also known for his artful renditions to subjects like frontliners, people living in HIV, and other notable causes ion his work, with his first official breakthrough exhibit named “One-Eyed Women” launched in the MetLive atrium in Pasay City.
The limited edition Virrco Bags will be available for orders at www.virrco.net, and on Viirrco’s facebook page at facebook.com/virrcoart.
For more information about Smile Train and its local entity Smile Train Philippines, visit www.SmileTrain.org, www.SmileTrain.ph, and follow them on twitter, Instagram (@SmileTrainPh), and Facebook (@SmileTrainPhilippines).