Experiencing Filipino contemporary art at the Pinto Art Museum

I have been to this place twice before, but Pinto Art Museum doesn’t fail to amaze me during my every visit. Located in an exclusive subdivision in Antipolo City, this museum is the home of Philippine contemporary art that offers both a feast for the eyes and a haven for nature lovers. The masterpieces made by magnificent Filipino artists are housed in a cluster of structures that give a mix of Spanish and Mediterranean vibe, allowing the entire place to become one of the must-visit destinations in the east.

pinto art museum 1

I already have an entry about the museum a couple of years ago, and I admit that at the time, I went there to take pictures decent enough to adorn this blog. This time, though I had some fun time with my friends taking Instagrammable shots, we also took the time to understand, appreciate, and discuss some of the pieces we find more interesting than the others.

How to get there

With everything digitalized these days, people with cars can easily get there via Waze, Google maps, etc. But for us who travel by commute, the easiest way is via tricyle from the Antipolo Cathedral for Php50. To get to the Antipolo Catheral, there’s UV Express from SM Megamall that can take you there for Php40. How to get to SM Megamall? MRT Edsa Shaw Blvd. Station is the easiest route.

What to expect

The standard rate of entrance fee to the museum is Php200. PWDs and senior citizens pay Php180, and the students pay Php150 provided that they have their school ID with them. If you’re too fixed with all your belongings, best to bring a tote bag rather than a backpack, otherwise you’ll be asked to leave it in the baggage counter. I believe this is a precautionary measure so you won’t accidentally bump with the artworks with it. You might also want to bring a water bottle because, baby, you are in for lots and lots of walking – not to mention up and down the stairs.

pinto art museum 2

Where to eat

Cafe Rizal is the only place to eat inside the premises. Please be advised that we waited for 40 minutes for our food to be served. The food prices ranges from Php250 up to Php700 depending on what you want to eat. I paid around Php360 for my lunch which consisted of beef, rice, and watermelon shake. Take note that I have PWD discount so this is definitely more expensive.

pinto art museum 3 - cafe rizal

The galleries

I wasn’t really paying attention to which gallery my friends and I were in (some ignorant piece of scum trying to be cultured that I am), maybe only because I got to excited to see the artworks inside.  A lot of them depicted politics, faith, religion and love – some of the most powerful forces especially in this country and relevant enough to warrant anyone’s attention.

Fine arts should connect to the audience, just like a book’s characters should connect to the reader, or the words of a song should connect the singer and the listener. But sometimes we have different interpretations on them, much like a teacher who insists that the blue curtains in the poem conveys the poet’s sadness and melancholic state when the truth is the blue curtains are just effin’ blue. I guess what I’m saying is, I’m afraid that the creator of these artworks might come across this entry and say, you’re wrong, that’s not what I meant when I made that. Believe me, it has happened before (to someone else, thankfully) on Twitter.

The first sculpture is called Don’t Drag Me To Hell. I can’t help but think of the Spanish flu because of their masks. Or yes, the deadly nCov. Funny how the man drags the woman instead of the other way around. I don’t know, it feels like it’s too accurate not to notice.

The second artwork is called Don’t Let Me Go. It really looks like a love to last so many lifetimes, because despite the fact that the lovers are disintegrating/melting/disappearing, their lips are still intertwined like it’s the only thing that keeps their existence.

And the last piece? The last piece has always made me sad. The man’s reluctance to hold the woman, and the woman’s determination to cling to him is just heartbreaking.

On faith and religion

No, I have nothing against faith healers. My mom has always said that it’s your faith that saved you. Although sometimes, I get to wonder about those who think it’s all there is to survive. Maybe they do not have the resources to get the right help they need. Maybe the inexplicable problems warrant inexplicable solutions. This picture reminds me heavily of Himala, and it’s people who believed in faithless religion.

Beware of false prophets, who come to you in the clothing of sheep, but inwardly they are ravening wolves, the Bible says. This picture depicts just that – the people looked to reluctant to look at the man in front of them.

The Philippine society

For these masterpieces, I’ve got nothing more to say. Sadly, they are the perfect depictions of what life is really like in the Philippines.

The second painting is just so big it was a challenge to capture it in one photo. I tried to use panorama but it’s too crappy and sacrilegious. I finally thought of recording it, but I just read the museum’s rules and guidelines and video recording is forbidden! Please don’t ask me why I just read it, or why I didn’t realize it sooner.

And I think there are galleries that we weren’t able to explore, since the place is just so big now that we spent most of the day checking it out. I didn’t see the indigenous art gallery and the Mindanaoan fine arts.

In the beginning of this year I decided to not make any goals, except for doing the things I used to do to keep myself inspired and motivated. I think I might’ve changed my mind and make it a goal to explore more museums. I think it would be fun.

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