On this day in 1818, Filipino merchant and sharecropper Francisco Mercado was born in Biñan, Laguna. Educated in Latin and philosophy at the Colegio de San Jose in Manila, Mercado settled in Calamba in 1830 to be a sharecropper in the newly opened Dominican estate there.
In 1848, he married Teodora Alonso Realonda, daughter of the municipal captain of Biñan. They had 11 children, including patriots Paciano and Dr. Jose Rizal, whom he raised through sharecropping and trading goods. He died on Jan. 5, 1898.
Along the way, they stopped at Leitmeritz, Bohemia for four days to visit Rizal’s esteemed friend Dr.Ferdinand Blumentritt and his family.
From there, the duo made stops in Vienna, Munich, Stuttgart, and Geneva, where they parted ways on June 23, 1887.
Jose Joya is a painter and multimedia artist who distinguished himself by creating an authentic Filipino abstract idiom that transcended foreign influences.
Most of Joya’s paintings of harmonious colors were inspired by Philippine landscapes, such as green rice paddies and golden fields of harvest. His use of rice paper in collages placed value on transparency, a common characteristic of folk art.