Saturday, April 10, 2010

National Museum - The National Art Gallery

The National Museum - The National Art Gallery

This is the continuation of my post about the National Museum. The first part is about the National Museum's Museum of the Filipino People located at the old Finance Building, here's the link to that post .

This second part is about the National Museum's National Art Gallery.

The National Museum - National Art Gallery is located at the Old House of Congress near the Manila City Hall facing the Intramuros golf course. It serves as the repository of art works and masterpieces of Filipino artists.

This building which houses the National Museum's National Art Gallery was originally designed by American architect Ralph Harrington Doane to become a public library in 1916. The construction was halted due to lack of funds. Later on, it was decided that it will become a Legislative building. Filipino Architect Juan Arellano was commissioned to continue the project. It was inaugurated in 1926. The first floor of the building became the National Library while the second, third and fourth floors were occupied by the offices of the Senators and House of Representatives.

It was here where the Constitutional Convention of 1934 was held and outside the building steps where President Manuel L. Quezon took his oath as President of the Commonwealth.

The Senate moved out of this building in 1996 and renovations were done in 2003 to transform it as the National Art Gallery .

The National Art Gallery is home of Juan Luna's Spoliarium.

The oil canvas measures 400 x 700 cm, it depicted dead gladiators being dragged into the shadowy area of a roman arena. The Spoliarium won the gold medal at the Exposicion National de Belles Artes in 1884.

The painting reflected the maltreatment, abuses and the discrimination of the Spaniards against the Filipinos they considered to be indios.

The Spoliarium is found at the second floor of the museum at the Hall of the Masters. The Hall of the Masters exhibits the paintings of National artists - Juan Luna and Felix Ressureccion Hidalgo.

Behind this door is the Spolarium.

It is also here where you can find a sculpture made by our National Hero Jose Rizal while he was in exile in Dapitan. The sculpture is entitled a "Mother's Revenge." A dog came to the aid of her puppy being attacked by a crocodile.

Aside from works of arts by National Artists, there's a room also where you can find bone collection of various animals including that of the huge sperm whale. The National Art Gallery also houses a Herbarium.

Below is the second and third floor plan of the museum with its corresponding rooms and galleries

A whole afternoon inside the National Museum is not enough to explore the richness of the Filipino Culture. My brother and I will be back to visit it again.

The National Museum - National Art Gallery is open Wednesday to Sunday from 10:00 am to 4:30 pm. 

* When my brother, my bf and I revisited the museum last November 2011, we were allowed to take souvenir shots of the art works inside the museum.  We also learned that we don't have to pay the P75.00 entrance fee every Sunday.  Here are some of my favorite artworks:

The Spoliarium by Juan Luna

La Bulaquena by Juan Luna

The Assasination of Governor General Bustamante
by Felix Ressureccion Hidalgo

the unfinished portrait drawn by
Fernando Amorsolo
at the background are the framed pencil sketches
of the late national artist

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