|National Living Treasure Award|
Gawad sa Manlilikha ng Bayan
|Awarded by Philippines|
|Awarded for||See Award|
|Sovereign||President of the Philippines|
|Next (higher)||Order of Gabriela Silang|
|Next (lower)||Gawad Mabini|
|Equivalent||Order of National Artists, Order of National Scientists, Order of National Social Scientists, Order of Lakandula - Special Class of Champion for Life|
Ribbon bar of the order
The National Living Treasures Award, alternatively known as the Gawad sa Manlilikha ng Bayan (GAMABA; lit. Award for the Creators of the Country) is conferred to a person or group of artists recognized by the Government of the Philippines for their contributions to the country's intangible cultural heritage. A recipient of the award, known as a National Living Treasures or Manlilikha ng Bayan is defined as "a Filipino citizen or group of Filipino citizens engaged in any traditional art uniquely Filipino, whose distinctive skills have reached such a high level of technical and artistic excellence and have been passed on to and widely practiced by the present generations in their community with the same degree of technical and artistic competence."
The National Living Treasures Award (Gawad sa Manlilikha ng Bayan) was institutionalized in 1992 through Republic Act No. 7355. The National Commission for Culture and the Arts, which is the highest policy-making and coordinating body of the Philippines for culture and the arts, was tasked with the implementation. This is in line with UNESCO's criteria of Living National Treasures.
To become a National Living Treasure, the candidate must possess the following qualifications:
A traditional artist who possesses all the qualities of a Manlilikha ng Bayan candidate, but due to age or infirmity has left them incapable of teaching further their craft, may still be recognized if:
The categories are, but not limited to, the following categories of traditional folk arts:
Other artistic expressions of traditional culture may be added.
As defined by UNESCO, the bearers of intangible cultural heritage are to be known internationally as Living Human Treasures. The Filipino counterparts of this title are the Gawad sa Manlilikha ng Bayan (GAMABA) awardees. There are currently sixteen declared GAMABA awardees, all of which have exemplified the highest standard in their respective field of expertise. The award is only given to individuals or groups that have exhibited the highest possible standard in intangible cultural heritage. A master of the heritage does not automatically qualify an individual or group for the award as the craft of the master should exude a higher meaning to the highest standard set by the highly critical council of the GAMABA board. Due to this lengthy and critical process, only sixteen of the thousands of traditional masters have been conferred with the award.