National Museum of Fine Arts in Manila Overview
After our trip to Intramuros Manila, we went to the National Museum.
I didn’t know that there are 3 buildings of National Museum, all along I thought that it’s just one, which is the one in front of Intramuros.
We first went here, and after touring around and I can’t find Lolong (the largest crocodile), I decided to ask some staff where it is and they told me that we were in the National Museum of Fine Arts and Lolong was at the National Museum of Natural History in Kalaw (ngek!)
Kaya naman pala ang kunti ng tao dito, e sa mga nababasa ko sa Facebook laging madaming tao. Akala ko sinuwerte lang kami ng punta.
Anyway, let me show you some shots we took at the National Museum of Fine Arts located at the Finance Road corner Padre Burgos Avenue.
The Spoliarium by Juan Luna Y Novicio is the first work of art that greets visitors upon entry into the museum. It is one of the most famous and precious paintings in the Philippines. The picture recreates a despoiling scene in a Roman circus where dead gladiators are stripped of weapons and garments. The painting was made by Luna in 1884 as an entry to the prestigious Exposicion de Bellas Artes (Madrid Art Exposition, May 1884) where it won the First Gold Medal.
GALLERY I (Luis I. Ablaza Hall)
Religious Art from the 17th to 19th centuries
Christian themed art in the Philippines was prevalent in the 17th to the 19th centuries when parts of the country was under Spanish colonial rule. Many of these religious images were of carved wooden santos (saints) made by unknown artists, as well as reliefs and paintings of the Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ. This gallery also features a National Cultural Treasure, a retablo (altarpiece) from the Church of San Nicolas de Tolentino in Dimiao, Bohol.
The Works of National Artist Guillermo E. Tolentino
National Artist Guillermo E. Tolentino (1890-1976) dominated Filipino sculpture in the 1920s to 1970s and the decades beyond, particularly in the field of portraiture and human forms. He worked in the classical style and mainly used plaster and metal to create his sculptures. His work and memorabilia presented here are in collaboration with the Tolentino Family, along with Security Bank president Frederick Dy, Judy Araneta-Roxas, Ernesto and Araceli Salas, and Nestor Jordin.
Paintings of Juan Luna
Works of master Filipino sculptor Isabelo L. Tampinco
The 19th century brought master Filipino sculptor Isabelo L. Tampinco (1850-1933), a contemporary of Jose Rizal who was known for developing the Estilo Tampinco style of carving and ornamentation. His sons Angel and Vidal followed in his craft, and helped him carve the sculptures in the Old Senate Session Hall on the third floor of this building. Tampinco’s contemporaries and artistic successors are distinguished by a strong academic and neo-classical style, including Graciano Nepomuceno, Anastacio Caedo, and Florentino Caedo, whose works are also on display here.
Old Senate Session Hall of the Philippines
This Hall was originally designed to be a library in the early 1920s during the American colonial period, when the architect Juan Arellano revised the plans of Ralph Harrington Doane in order to convert the building to the seat of the legislature. The Senate was then led by Manuel L. Quezon, the leader of the movement for Philippine independence from the United States.
The ornamentation and all other decoration in the Hall was the work of the most celebrated Filipino sculptor of the time, Isabelo Tampinco – a contemporary of Juan Luna and José Rizal – and his sons Ángel and Vidal. Tampinco gave full rein to his deep knowledge of classical sculpture, as well as to his personal artistic mission of Filipinizing many of the traditionally Western elements and motifs of the neoclassical style.
Paintings by Vicente S. Manansala
In the 1960s, the Philippine-American General Life Insurance Company (Philam Life) commissioned Vicente S. Manansala (1910-1981) to create seven large paintings for its building in UN Avenue, Ermita, Manila. This set of rural-themed, cubist paintings from the Philam Life Collection are now on loan to the National Museum for the public to enjoy.
The entire building is airconditioned.
Look at the hallway, the floor is shiny and the area is well lit. If you will bring your kid here, make sure to look after them because the sculptures are everywhere and they might accidentally bump and break it
Before the entrance to this museum will cost you P150.00 for adult, P120 for senior citizen and P50 for students. But now, the entrance is absolutely FREE.
They are open from Tuesdays to Sundays
10:00 am to 5:00 pm
For more information, visit the official website of the National Museum of the Philippines.