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Remembering Gabriel V. Custodio

2009 April 7

custodio pic500 Remembering Gabriel V. Custodio

Some of you may remember last year when I bought a painting that was signed “Custodio’s – Art – Philippines ’47″. I did my best to research the name Custodio, and found out that Gabriel Custodio was in fact an artist that very likely could have been the creator of my painting.

My search was more out of curiosity as opposed to any belief that the painting had any special value. I mean, it’s a very simple rendition of farm workers, and while I enjoy it a great deal, it’s obvious that it isn’t a masterpiece. We have placed it above our fireplace, and it is a constant reminder of the simple life we hope to enjoy someday on Samal Island.

Recently I stumbled across an article I didn’t find earlier that provides a very nice background of the life of Gabriel Custodio. It seems Mr. Custodio was known as much for being a teacher, as he was an artist. He was an influence on many others, passing along his style. Though not a complete history of the man, it does give some insight that doesn’t seem to available elsewhere.

I feel very fortunate to have found this painting, and to be able to enjoy a piece of Pilipino history in our home here in the States.

Remembering Gabriel V. Custodio, conservative great –

Related posts:
  1. Gabriel Custodio?
  2. Can I make it in the Philippines
  3. All Things Must Pass
  4. Frugality and the Philippines
  5. Interview with Playa Azalea’s Main Man

25 Responses leave one →
  1. April 12, 2009

    I like the color and texture in the painting. Also the pastel colors remind me of the Philippines. I found another painting of his, not sure if you have seen it or not. The Philippines has so much artistic potential and I hope to write an ebook or some other article on math or science and to have it illustrated by a Philippine artist.

    Here is the other painting I found on Google mages

  2. April 13, 2009

    Hi Kevin – thanks for the link to the other painting. I like it. It does look familiar, but I can’t remember if I’d found that before or not. At one time there was one on eBay but that link no longer works.

    I wasn’t that fond of my painting when I first found it. In fact I left, thought about it and came back the next day. It’s grown on me since.

  3. October 9, 2009

    Dear all

    Gabriel Custodio is an artist we own a great painting of. It is a market scene in the Philippines full of vitality, full of life of the open air fruit market in the the Philippines.

    It is signed and dated 1956 and we consider the work of Museum quality. Only one painting of the artist was sold at auction. Unfortunately no image for now but within the current or next month you might like to visit our site where the work will be posted for you to enjoy.

    Randy your painting looks great, it is an absolute gem to me and you should be proud of it. Hope you made a good inestment.

  4. October 10, 2009

    Hi Peter – it’s great to see so many works of Gabriel’s showing up now. Please let us know when you have your painting posted on your site. I’d enjoy seeing it.

    Thanks for the kind comments about our painting.

    • January 2, 2010


      I asked my web designer and engineer to include the Custodio on the first show of the site and I can happily infotm you it is on.

      It looks good but it is a lot better than what the photo shows. I love the painting and I now that I know a little more about the artist I feel he is worth every penny one might pay for his work.

      Please visit my site.

      • January 2, 2010

        Hi Peter – thanks for sharing that. That’s a very nice piece and I’m sure someone will be very happy to own it.

        I see that it’s about 12 years later than my painting and I think it shows in the detail. I’m not sure if I did the currency conversion correctly, but I’d sure be interested to know if it sells.

        • January 3, 2010


          Paintings are worth what one feels are worth. As I say on the site the artist has one auction result at 1200 pounds, 2400 dollars for a painting 50x70cm. That was some ten years ago.

          Good paintings and of the nature of these topographical pictures are rare, they are old now and The Philippines is not going bust.

          Keep the pieces, they should be worth a few dollars soon enough, if not today.

          The artists I commission work to ask for 10,000 dollars plus for such paintings today, not fifty years ago.

          Keep in touch Randy. I shall put a sale sign on the painting in due course, I hope.

          • November 26, 2010

            Hi Peter,

            But here you can see a similar painting as I have at home painted in the same year (1956) with an asking price of 15.500 UK Pounds!


            And my painting is double in size.

            So, the last few years an Custodio went up in price a bit….

            Willem Legerstee

          • November 26, 2010

            Hi Willem – that is Peter’s painting, or at least the company he represents that you have linked to. If you click on Peter’s name you will see it takes you to the site.

    • celia permalink
      June 13, 2011

      Hi, my mom has 3 pcs of Gabriel Custodio’s paintings, one of the painting is “The Helping Hand”.my dad bought these paintings early 50′ still has it’s original frames. The ” Helping Hand” won an award. We want to sell these paintings.

      • June 13, 2011

        Hi Celia – not sure where the best to sell those might be. eBay might be worth a try.

        I have to consider whether it is viable to bring my painting to the Philippines or sell it also. I guess I have a few items it that category.

        • Celia Barba Ybanez permalink
          June 13, 2011

          Thanks Randy for that immediate reply. Yes, I might try to sell them in ebay.

          • Willem Legerstee permalink
            July 10, 2011

            Hi Celia,

            I see on the internet that the Helping Hand by Custodio is offered in the Philippines’ Cebu Classifieds for 600.000 Pesos!

            Is that your painting?

            Kind regards

            Willem Legerstee
            Proud owner of Gabriel Custodio’s Cavite Fishing Village painting

          • July 18, 2011

            Hi Willem – though Celia didn’t answer, my understanding is that is her family’s painting. The price is inline for what they are asking for it, I believe.

  5. Willem Legerstee permalink
    November 26, 2010

    Hi Randy,

    Sometime ago I send you a message that Mr. Custodio was my uncle. I am married with his niece and we are still visiting his wife in Manila, who is my auntie. Even his son is now a gifted art director at JWT AdAgency in Manila.
    We are visiting the Philippines in January again.
    I promised to send you some pictures of one oil painting we have from Gabriel Custodio and one pastel painting. We own 2 more, but these two we like most.
    The line you see in the pastel painting is due to broken glass. We have to fix it.


    Willem and Pacita Legerstee

    How can I send you my pictures?

    • November 26, 2010

      Thanks, Willem.

      Those are great paintings, and you should be proud of them. I particularly like the Cavite Fishing Village painting.

      I appreciate you sharing them with us here.

  6. Celia Barba Ybanez permalink
    June 13, 2011

    We have 3 paintings done by Gabriel Custodio and we would like to sell them. One won an award and the title of that painting is “The Helping Hand”. If you are interested, please email me. Thanks and God bless you.

    • Peter Constant permalink
      July 9, 2011

      I would like to see images of the paintings of Custodio you own.

      I am interested in buying.

      Peter Constant

      • July 10, 2011

        Hi Peter – I forwarded your email to Celia. Hopefully she will get in touch with you.

  7. david permalink
    September 9, 2011

    hello, i have two of Gabriel Custodios painting for sale now. one is a out door market, a lady selling and many people around, the other a sail boat scene, very lovely. i bought them 14 y/o at a estate sale in Hillsbourgh near san francisco. if intersted lets talk, david

  8. Gabriel Custodio Jr. permalink
    October 4, 2011

    Hi Everyone,

    Pardon my intrusion. Gabriel Jr. here. I’m glad to see all of you have my father’s paintings. Please do keep them. And in the case of Miss Celia Ybanez, maybe I could help you sell those paintings. Though you can also approach prominent collectors, art galleries or museums who might be interested in having a Custodio.

    My cousin in law Willem was kind enough to share a few details about his relationship with my dad. And share his painting collection as well.

    I’m coming up with a book on my father and his work. Hopefully we finish the book next year. If you guys are interested in showcasing your collection in the book, please do let me know.

    Just email me at if you need any information regarding your Custodio paintings, the painters life, more Custodio work and we can discuss further.

    Thanks and Cheers to you all,

    • October 4, 2011

      Hi Gabe – no intrusion at all. Welcome to the discussion and thanks!

      I think that’s great that you are doing a book on your father’s work. Great that the work will get out there, and great that you are honoring him in that way.

      I hope that your offer to showcase works is accepted. I’d be glad to provide you photos or information on mine, if you feel it would be of use.

      Please provide information on the book as it becomes available. I’d be glad to promote it here.

  9. Deb S permalink
    November 26, 2011

    Hi, I was pleased to find this. We lived in the Philippines when I was very young from 1958 to 1961. During that time my mother took art classes from an artist whose last name was Custodio. I just now decided to look him up and found your post and believe this is the same man. I have a small painting of his…also workers out in a field and my brother has another landscape scene. Thanks for posting this info, I find it very interesting.

    • November 27, 2011

      Hi Deb – seems Mr. Custodio was known to many people during that time. He was not just an artist but a teacher, too.

      I’m glad you found the post of interest. I think you are lucky to own one of his paintings.

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