LOS ANGELES - His work is known throughout the Philippines on billboards and with celebrities. Now, photographer Niccolo Cosme is making his mark in the US, holding a one night exhibition called "Monologues, soliloquies and tributes", an exhibit inspired by gay rights.
"I came here because I wanted to get inspiration, because I know how America is very forward with LGBT rights and in the Philippines, we're still struggling with discrimination and stigma. I feel if I bring my artworks here and I bring them back home, it will have that different energy," said Cosme.
Cosme told the audience of how his parents had attempted to turn him into a priest after they found out he was gay.
His exhibit which took five years to create and features several ABS-CBN talents including Vice Ganda and John Avila and pays tribute to Filipino lesbian, gay, bisexual activists and victims of HIV.
"This basically is me bringing their stories to the world," he said.
Cosme's former photo subject Disney star Anna Maria Perez De Tagle, brought some of her Camp Rock costars to check out the exhibit.
"I'm so proud of him and his work is phenomenal so he deserves everything that he's getting and I can't wait for him to continue to tour," said De Tagle.
For the Fil-Am LGBT community, they said they're proud to see a multi-awarded Filipino artist represent their cause, especially because they consider the Philippines behind when it comes to gay rights and HIV advocacy.
"Expressing a big national issue, putting it into an art form, it's an amazing thing," said Nico Nava of Barangay LA.
After photo shoots with Fil-Am celebrities in Los Angeles, Cosme will return to the Philippines where he will continue his LGBT and HIV awareness campaign thru his headshot clinic that he will unveil in December.
While Cosme remains one of the most sought-after celebrity photographers in the Philippines, he said he will continue enjoying his work especially when it revolves around his many passions and advocacies.