Alfonso Dato has a preference for social realism but this does not keep him from producing images and landscapes of Baguio City. Dato views everything from a fresh vantage point, by giving his subjects a new spin, whereby he invites viewers to give familiar and ordinary scenes a second look and see the beauty that often eludes them. His works reflect nuances of how he processes events in his immediate environment, and society in general. He is a part of the Tam-awan Village Artists circle, a cultural and art center built by local artists with the aim of showcasing and preserving the heritage of Cordillera.
Alfonso Dato got interested in art after high school and remembers being fascinated and inspired by Juan Luna’s “Spolarium.” He joined his first group show with the Baguio Arts Guild in the early 1990s and held his first solo at the Tarlac Museum in 1995.
He is a member of the Tam-awan Village Artist’s (TVA) and joins the group’s exhibitions at the Ayala Art Space, NCCA Gallery, GSIS Museum, and other galleries in Metro Manila. In workshops facilitated by the TVA in cooperation with the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), Alfonso held workshops in basic art techniques to elementary and high school students in different parts of the country such as Ilocos Sur, Benguet, Mountain Province, Romblon, and Misamis Occidental.