Free viewing of Catholic art, others extended

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MANILA, June 2, 2015—For those who have missed the announcement last month, or who simply want to recreate their “culture vulture” experience, the National Museum of the Philippines has some good news for you: free admission has been extended until the end of June.

Independence day, Rizal

The National Museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. (Photo: Raymond A. Sebastián)

According to a recent post by the official Facebook page of the National Museum, the decision to make entrance free once again is due to the positive response it received from visitors in May who grabbed the opportunity to view its collection of fine art and artifacts.

It is also in line with the forthcoming celebration of the country’s 117th Independence Day anniversary on June 12, as well as the 154th birthday of national hero Dr. José P. Rizal on June 19.

Catholic art

More than Juan Luna’s super-sized “Spoliarium” and other Filipino “Old Masters” like the ones by Felix Resurrección Hidalgo, Fabian de la Rosa, and Fernando Amorsolo, the National Museum’s art gallery is also home to some of the rarest religious sculptures in the country, which date back to between the 17th and 19th centuries.

On display at the museum’s Luis I. Ablaza Hall (Gallery I) are pieces of Christian-themed artwork like various carved wooden “santos” or “poon” made by anonymous artists like those of San Antonio de Padua (St. Anthony of Padua), Santiago Matamoros (St. James the Moorslayer), as well as reliefs of La Pietà, cherubs and seraphims, several crucifixes, and a painting of the Immaculate Conception.

National cultural treasure

Also on exhibit is an antique “retablo” (altar piece) from the Church of San Nicolas de Tolentino in Dimiao, Bohol, which is considered one of the Philippines’ national cultural treasures.

Open from Tuesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. until 5 p.m., entrance to the National Museum is free for the whole month of June. (Raymond A. Sebastián/CBCP News)

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