My wife and I recently had an exhilarating art experience in… what do you know… right in nearby Antipolo, about a good hour’s ride from our place in Taguig. The Pinto Academy for the Arts and Sciences is, as the name suggests, “the Philippines’ door to contemporary and emerging local art. It is a place that showcases local artists and art forms to the world, and a door for everyone to appreciate the healing powers of Art, Science and Nature.” It is a hidden gem that we Filipinos can truly be proud of.
Pinto is the Filipino term for ‘door’, hence the gallery is considered a gateway to modern and contemporary Filipino art form, and a door that provides opportunities for promising local artists. It has numerous galleries for contemporary arts, with an indigenous section, and its newest addition: the Arts and Sciences for Healing and Wholeness. Entrance cost us only P250 per. For that, we were treated to loads of local artwork.
Upon entering, the first thing that caught my attention was the Mediterranean gallery. After which was a small, cozy chapel that would be perfect for a private wedding ceremony. Next to it was the Rizal Cafe, which offered a variety of local and foreign delicacies. Prices were fairly reasonable, but then we decided to explore the area first before coming back for lunch.
The Academy for Arts and Sciences for Healing and Wellness is the newest addition to the museum. It was opened only in 2016. According to the owner, arts and science must work hand-in-hand. In fact, art has a soothing quality that can – in a huge way – provide treatment for such ailments as depression and stress.
One of the things that impressed me most was the generous expanse of free space that could be used for open-air lectures or workshops. There was this open-air auditorium on the rooftop of one of the buildings, plus a lot of free spaces that could give you solitude and absolute peace of mind.
The next galleries housed different forms of sculptures, using all sorts of material. From wire to gum to thread, etc. Truly creative. Another gallery offered paintings. Inspiration came from different sources; from the social issues of the day to comic books, to love and war, to happy and difficult times. There too was a small room depicting erotic art.
The entire 1.5 hectare complex was cleverly laid out that it looked to me like it was thrice that size. With the rolling terrain of Antipolo, the trek through the different galleries – plus the heat – was quite a challenge. That made the stop at the cafe well worth it.
We had a short breather at the cafe. Got our fill of their great pasta. Then we proceeded to the swimming pool area and the owner’s quaint home, where the view from the roofdeck was exhilarating. Especially come the sunset. Unfortunately, we couldn’t wait for the sun to set anymore.
The Pinto Art Museum was a refreshing and enlightening visit. Loved the greens, loved the fresh air, loved the solitude it provided, loved the learning. It was certainly worth our time and energy. It’s a small secret that previously, only the art crowd would know about. But with today’s rewind brought about by the pandemic, a trip to the Museum is certainly one I would endorse. Not crowded, lots of open space, great learning experience, good exercise too. What more can you ask for?
Come and see the Pinto Art Museum. You won’t regret it! (Open only on Tuesdays and Sundays, we were told.)