May 27, 2015 

The National Artists of the Philippines Guidelines

The Order of the  National Artists Award  (Orden ng Gawad Pambansang Alagad ng Sining) is the highest national recognition given to Filipino individuals who have made significant contributions to the development of Philippine arts; namely, Music, Dance, Theater, Visual Arts, Literature, Film and Broadcast Arts,  and Architecture and Allied Arts.  The order is jointly administered by the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) and Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) and conferred by the President of the Philippines upon recommendation by both institutions.

The Order of National Artists Award  is one of the Honors conferred by the Republic  of the Philippines that embodies the nation’s highest ideals in the humanities and aesthetic expression through the distinct achievements of individual citizens.  While the Republic bestows due recognition to these singular achievements, it in turn honors its own cultural heritage, whose enrichment these achievements have significantly effected, enhanced, and given direction.

These achievements are measured in terms of their vision, unusual insight, creativity and imagination, technical proficiency of the highest order in expressing Filipino culture and traditions, history, way of life, and aspirations.


    1. The Order of the  National Artist Award (Orden ng Gawad Pambansang Alagad ng Sining) was established under Proclamation No. 1001 dated April 27, 1972 to give appropriate recognition and prestige to Filipinos who have distinguished themselves and made outstanding contributions to Philippine arts and letters.  The first award was conferred posthumously later that year on Fernando Amorsolo.

    2. Proclamation No. 1144 dated May 15, 1973 named the CCP Board of Trustees as the National Artist Awards Committee and Presidential Decree No. 208 issued on June 7, 1973 reiterated the mandate of CCP to administer the National Artist Awards as well as the privileges and honors to National Artists.

    3. The NCCA was organized under Republic Act No. 7356 dated April 2, 1992 and given broad responsibilities over the development and promotion of the Filipino national culture and the arts, including awards to persons who have significantly contributed to the development and promotion of Philippine culture and the arts.

    4. Executive Order No. 236 dated September 19, 2003, otherwise known as the Honors Code of the Philippines, conferred additional prestige on the National Artist Award by raising it to the level of a Cultural Order, fourth in precedence among the orders and decorations that comprise the Honors of the Philippines, and equal in rank to the Order of National Scientists and the Gawad sa Manlilikha ng Bayan.  The National Artist Award was thereby renamed the Order of National Artists (Orden ng mga Pambansang Alagad ng Sining).


The Order of National Artists aims to recognize:

    1. Filipino artists who have made significant contributions to the cultural heritage of the country.
    2. Filipino artistic accomplishment at its highest level and to promote creative expression as significant to the development of a national cultural identity.
    3. Filipino artists who have dedicated their lives to their works to forge new paths and directions for future generations of Filipino artists.


The following privileges are provided to those conferred with the Order of National Artists:

    1. The rank and title of National Artist, as proclaimed by the President of the Philippines;
    2. The National Artist gold-plated  medallion minted by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP)  and citation ;
    3. Lifetime emolument and material and physical benefits comparable in value to those received by the highest officers of the land such as:

      3.1. A minimum  cash award of Two Hundred Thousand Pesos (P200,000.00), net of taxes for living awardees and a  minimum  cash award of One Hundred Fifty Thousand Pesos (P150,000.00), net of taxes for posthumous awardees, payable to legal heir/s;
      3.2 A minimum lifetime personal  monthly stipend of Thirty Thousand Pesos  (P30,000.00)

      The above-mentioned privileges shall be given effective January 1, 2013.

      3.3 Life insurance coverage for Awardees who are still insurable;
      3.4 A State Funeral benefit not exceeding P500,000.00.

    4. A place of honor, in line with protocular precedence, in state functions,  national commemoration ceremonies and all other cultural presentations;.


    1. The National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) and the Cultural Center of the Philippines, acting as the Order of the National Artists Award Secretariat (ONAA) shall plan, organize and implement the Order of National Artists Award.

    2. It  shall enlist the support and cooperation of private sector experts from the various field of art to ensure that the awards are implemented in a successful and impartial manner.

    3. The Order of the  National Artists Award Secretariat shall commission art experts to form a Special Research Group who shall verify information submitted on nominees and provide essential data.  They shall be selected for their specialization and familiarity with the works and accomplishments of nominated artists.

    4. The Special Research Group shall be composed of at least ten members  (10who have expertise in one or more fields of discipline.

    5. The Order of the  National Artists Award Panel  of Experts and Jury of Experts  shall be created before or during the nomination period.  They are tasked to screen nominees and recommend to the NCCA and CCP Boards the candidates for the Order of National Artists.  It shall be composed of highly regarded peers, scholars, (including cultural philosophers and historians), academicians, researchers, art critics, and other knowledgeable individuals.  A wider age-range or experts who would have first-hand knowledge of achievements of nominees shall be considered.

    6. The selection of the members of the National Artist Award Panel of Experts and Jury of Experts shall be based on the following criteria:

      (a) should have achieved authority, credibility and track record in his field(s) of expertise;
      (b) should have extensive knowledge in his field(s) and his views on Philippine art and culture must be national in perspective;
      (c) should be a recognized authority in the study or research of Philippine art and culture;
      (d) must be willing to devote sufficient time and effort to the work of the Council;
      (e) must be willing to sign a non-disclosure statement in order to safeguard the confidentiality of the deliberations;
      (f) must not have been convicted with finality of any crime by a court of justice or dismissed for a cause by any organization, whether public or private.

    7. The Order of National Artists Award Panel  of Experts  shall be composed of a maximum of seven (7) members from  each of the seven (7) areas/disciplines.  The living National Artists will automatically become members in addition to the forty-nine (49) selected members.  These members will constitute the first deliberation panel and will be invited to evaluate the nominations and materials submitted by the Special Research Group.

    8. The Order of the National Artists Award Jury of Experts shall be composed of a maximum of three (3) members from  each of the seven (7) areas/disciplines and  will constitute the second deliberation panel.  They  will be invited to evaluate the short-listed nominees from the first deliberation panel.

    9. Any member of the Panel  of Experts or  Jury of Experts  who is nominated  or related to a nominee up to the fourth degree of consanguinity or affinity shall inhibit himself/herself from the deliberation process.  Likewise, any member may decline to participate in the deliberation for any reason or may be removed for just cause upon recommendation to the NCCA/CCP  Boards by at least two thirds (2/3s) of the members; in  which case, the National Artist Award Secretariat shall again select the replacements for those who decline or resigned until the first deliberation panel is completed.

    10. The list of nominated members of the Order of  National Artists Award Panel of Experts and Jury of Experts shall be reviewed by the Order of the  National Artists Award Secretariat as needed, for purposes of adding new members or replacements.

    11. The members of the Order of  National Artists Award Panel of Experts and Jury of Experts shall serve for a fixed term of three (3) years.


The Order of National Artists shall be given to artists who have met the following criteria:

    1. Living artists who are natural-born Filipino citizens at the time of nomination,  as well as those who died after the establishment of the award in 1972 but were Filipino citizens at the time of their death.  Filipinos who have lost and re-acquired Filipino citizenship, through dual citizenship status for at least the minimum period of five years shall be eligible for nomination.
    2. Artists who through the content and form of their works have contributed in building  a Filipino sense of nationhood.
    3. Artists who have pioneered in a mode of creative expression or style, thus, earning distinction and making an impact on succeeding generations of artists.
    4. Artists who have created a substantial and significant body of works and/or consistently displayed excellence in the practice of their art form thus enriching artistic expression or style.
    5. Artists who enjoy broad acceptance through:

      5.1 prestigious national and/or international recognition, such as the Gawad CCP Para sa
      , CCP Thirteen Artists Award and NCCA Alab ng Haraya
      5.2 critical acclaim and/or reviews of their works
      5.3 respect and esteem from peers. 


    1. The National Artist Award Secretariat shall announce the opening of nominations through media releases and letters to qualified organizations.
    2. Candidates may be nominated under one or more of the following categories:
      1. Dance – choreography, direction and/or performance.
      2. Music – composition, direction, and/or performance.
      3. Theater – direction, performance and/or production design.
      4. Visual Arts – painting, sculpture, printmaking, photography, installation art, mixed media works, illustration, graphic arts, performance art and/or imaging.
      5. Literature – poetry, fiction, essay, playwriting, journalism and/or literary criticism.
      6. Film  and Broadcast Arts – direction, writing, production design, cinematography, editing, camera work,  and/or performance.
      7. Architecture, Design and Allied Arts – architecture design, interior design, industrial arts design, landscape architecture and fashion design

      3. Nominations for the Order of National Artists may be submitted by government and non-government cultural organizations and educational institutions, as well as private foundations and councils.
      4. Members of the Special Research Group, as well as agencies attached to the NCCA and CCP shall not submit nominations.
      5. NCCA and CCP Board members and consultants and NCCA and CCP officers and staff, and NCCA Committee members  are automatically disqualified from being nominated.
      6. Nominations shall be accepted only when these are submitted in writing and with proper supporting documentation, as follows:

      1. A cover letter signed by the head or designated representative of the nominating organization. The cover letter shall be accompanied by a Board Resolution approving the nominee concerned with the said resolution signed by the organization President and duly certified by the Board Secretary.
      2. A duly accomplished nomination form;
      3. A detailed curriculum vitae of the nominee;
      4. A list of the nominee’s significant works categorized according to the criteria;
      5. The latest photograph (color or black and white) of the nominee, either 5” x 7” or 8” x 11”;
      6. Pertinent information materials on the nominee’s significant works (on CDs, VCDs and DVDs);
      7. Copies of published reviews;
      8. Any other document that may be required.
      7. Nominations received beyond the announced deadline for the submission of nominations shall not be considered.

      8. All inquiries and nominations shall be submitted to

         Office of the Artistic Director
         Cultural Center of the Philippines
         Roxas Boulevard, 1300 Pasay City


         Office of the  Executive Director
         National Commission for Culture and the Arts
         633 General Luna Street, Intramuros, Manila


    1. The National Artist Award Secretariat shall pre-screen the nominees based on Nomination Process technical guideline items 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7.  The pre-screening shall  be based on the accomplishments and merits of the nominee.
    2. The Special Research Group shall accomplish its task within six (6) months.  The main objective is to verify the validity of the data, and evaluate the quality, true value and significance of works according to the criteria.  It shall come up with the updated and comprehensive profiles of nominees reflecting their most outstanding achievements.
    3. The National Artist Award Secretariat will meet to review the list of nominees as oversight function such as inadvertent omissions.  Consequently, deserving nominees shall be added to the list.
    4. The first deliberation panel (Council of Experts) shall be intra-disciplinary.  The panelists shall be grouped according to their respective fields of expertise or disciplines to shortlist the nominees in their disciplines or categories for  presentation to the second deliberation panel.
    5. The second deliberation panel (Jury of Experts)  shall be composed of a different set of experts  and may include members from varying backgrounds such as critics and academicians.  The achievements of each short listed nominee shall be presented by a highly-qualified expert.  Then panel deliberates and ranks the short listed nominees according to the order of precedence following the set criteria of the Order of National Artists.  In extreme cases, the Second Deliberation may add new names to the lists.
    6. The recommendations from the Second Deliberation Panel of the Order of  National Artist Award Jury  of Experts shall then be presented to the joint boards of NCCA and CCP for final selection.  The presentors shall prepare their presentation in writing together with an audio-visual presentation or power point presentation.  Written interpellations/opinions will be accepted from selected critics.  The review shall be based on the ranking done by the Jury of Experts. 
    7. The voting shall be across disciplines.  The National Artists will be given the option whether to vote on all categories or on his/her particular discipline.
    8. Proxy votes will not be allowed in the Selection Process.  Designation of permanent representatives of agencies should be made at the outset to make them regular Board members of NCCA and thus, may be allowed to cast votes.
    9. The list of awardees shall be submitted to the President of the Republic of the Philippines for confirmation, proclamation and conferral. 


    1. The selection and conferment of the National Artists shall take place every three (3) years.
    2. The Order of National Artists shall be conferred by the President of the Philippines on June 11 or any appropriate date in fitting ceremonies to be organized by the National Artist Award Secretariat.
    3. The medallion of the Order of National Artists and citation shall be given to the awardee  during the conferment ceremony.  The cash award of P200,000.00 in check shall be given immediately after the ceremony or at another time and place as requested by the awardee.
    4. A posthumous conferral consisting of the medallion and citation shall be given to the family or legal heir/s of the awardee.  The cash award of P150,000.00 in check shall be given to the awardee’s legal heir/s or a representative designated by the family immediately after the ceremony or at another time and place as requested by the family.

Download .doc file of the NATIONAL ARTIST GUIDELINES


updated as of August 17, 2012



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