MANILA, May 25, 2015—The best things in life are free that is why everyone, especially students and the youth, still has a week left to drop by the National Museum of the Philippines to see, admire, and learn from its collection of Christian-themed artwork dating back to between the 17th and 19th centuries.
While more famous for 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, few people know that the National Museum’s art gallery is also home to some of the most breathtaking religious sculptures in the country.
On exhibit at the museum’s Luis I. Ablaza Hall (Gallery I) are 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 displayed 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.
Entrance to the National Museum is free for the whole month of May in keeping with the National Heritage Month.
It is open from Tuesday to Sunday, 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. (Raymond A. Sebastián/CBCP News)