Pinto Art Gallery
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Discovering the Pinto Art Gallery & Museum
On a recent visit to Manila, friends suggested getting out of the heat and traffic and visiting the Pinto Art Gallery & Museum. Situated on a hilltop in Antipolo with grand views of the city, the museum houses a substantial private collection of Philippine contemporary art. My family started its visit at the gallery of rotating exhibits and walked downhill through several Spanish-styled stucco buildings spread across a hillside. The Tagalog word for door is pinto, and through these airy and light-filled buildings, one enters and exits the many doors of Filipino social and political consciousness as expressed in the lively works of many creative Filipino artists. Of note, the Antipolo Cathedral holds one of the most famous and revered images from the Spanish empire of the 16th to 19th centuries, Nuestra Señora de Paz y Buen Viaje.
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Garden of Many Delights
East of Manila lies the hill town of Antipolo, home of the Pinto Art Gallery & Museum. Interspersed throughout the tropical gardens surrounding the museum, sculptures glide from walls, crouch by the shade and tease the imagination.
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Holy Cow! What DO we worship?
Returning to Antipolo after decades living overseas I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the town I associated with vendors selling freshly roasted cashews to pilgrims visiting the town’s patron saint, the Virgin of Peace and Good Voyage, now houses an excellent art museum -- the Pinto Art Gallery & Museum. Built in the late 1970s the museum exhibits treasures of Philippine contemporary art. The collection is particularly noted for themes of social and cultural critique. Because the museum is spread out over several buildings on a hill, be prepared for a lot of walking uphill and downhill. The gallery shop sells cold bottled water and a café is open on weekends.
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