Cinematographer Kidlat de Guia, son of Kidlat Tahimik, died in Spain


THE TWO ARTISTS National Artist for Film Kidlat Tahimik (right) bonds with his son, Kidlat de Guia, in this file photo taken in their hometown of Baguio. Young Kidlat, an accomplished cinematographer, photographer and visual artist, died this week in Spain. —EV ESPIRITU

BAGUIO CITY – The son and namesake of filmmaker and national artist Kidlat Tahimik died Tuesday in Madrid, Spain, where the latter concluded a six-month exhibition on the colonization of the country by the Spanish empire.

Kidlat de Guia, 46, a visual artist, photographer and cinematographer, is believed to have died in his sleep, according to people close to him, but his immediate family members have yet to issue an official statement on his death.

Her younger brother Kawayan, however, shared a tribute in a Facebook post on Thursday.


“To you…my brother, our brother, our friend, our partner in crime, the mischievous eye, the comfort zone, the bearer of good and bad news…you…my friend…you!” Spine. My love, our love, my love,” Kawayan wrote.

Tahimik had shipped most of his art collection to Spain to set up an installation on the 500 years of Spanish colonization of the country from the “point of view of the colonized” at the Palacio de Cristal in Madrid. Entitled “Magallanes, Marilyn, Mickey and Fray Damaso. 500 Años de conquistadores rock stars,” Tahimik’s exhibition began in October last year and ended on March 6.

Some of Tahimik’s friends in Baguio said Kidlat was there to help dismantle his father’s exhibit and bring it back to Baguio.

Kidlat, whose mother is German artist and cultural activist Katrin de Guia, is survived by his widow, theater actress and Baguio Chronicle columnist Lissa Romero, and their two children.

Images of people power

The National Archives has preserved footage of a little-known 1986 People Power event at Baguio Cathedral that was shot by Tahimik (born Eric de Guia), considered the father of independent Filipino cinema. It featured the children of Tahimik, including Kidlat, who were filmed climbing a tank carrying soldiers who defected from the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos.

Kidlat was credited as one of the cast in Tahimik’s 1979 independent film, ‘Sinong Lumikha ng Yoyo? Sinong Lumikha ng Moon Buggy”, and was featured with his siblings in the 1994 film essay, “Bakit Dilaw Ang Kulay ng Bahaghari”, about the bloodless revolution as seen through the eyes by Kidlat.

Kidlat, a graduate in audiovisual communication from the University of the Philippines Diliman, has produced videos and advocacy materials for non-governmental organizations such as International Alert in London in 2008, and directed “Sports for Peace” for German Technical Cooperation , which his resume describes as a peace initiative for young children in Mindanao.


He has also developed video projects for Cartoon Network and Discovery Channel. Kidlat was the National Winner of Discovery Channel’s First Time Filmmaker Initiative in 2001 and received the 2003 Lifetime Achievement Award for his film “Banal Tubig Banal Kahoy” at the Aqua Planet Video Festival.

Kidlat was the cinematographer for his father’s 2015 installment, “Balikbayan #1,” an alternative historical account of the Filipino who circumnavigated the planet in the service of Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan.

He was also director of photography and editor of the documentary “Ang Lakaran ni Kabunyan: Kabunyan’s Journey to Liwanag”.


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