ROAM TO BENCAB MUSEUM

Visiting museum is always part of our fieldtrip during my highschool days. I remember I am more excited to roam inside the shopping mall in Manila (mostly last place to visit) than to know each masterpiece in the museum. Well, I’m too ignorant then that I don’t understand the additional knowledge it could possibly bring to my personal lives. If it wasn’t for the report I need to produce after our visit, I’d rather not to give much attention on our less than two hour exploration inside the museum. Anyway, that was before when all we have to do is fall in line and follow the guide along with our teachers whose eyes were set to all students while jotting some notes as part of our assignment afterward.But it was a different scenario when you are are not anymore a student in school. Your point of view will definitely change when you enter a different phase of being a student — in the school of life.

During our 2 day trip in Baguio, we got an opportunity to visit BenCab Museum which by then is unfamiliar to me. Though I had visited some respective museum before, I was excited this time to see what this historical place store for us. Well, BenCab museum is owned and manage by our National Artist and Master of Contemporary Philippine Art, Mr. Benedicto Cabrera, fondly called as BenCab, where the museum itself was named after him. It takes more than thirty-minutes trip from our previous destination to BenCab Museum. We’re so lucky to have kuya as our tourguide because he know exactly where to go and we easily find the place without any peril. There’s a mural outside the main entrance that serve as a major hint to all incoming visitors of what to expect inside. Again, our group did not miss any chance to make our camera more functional by capturing every piece we saw along the premises. Just a friendly reminder, flash and tripod is not allowed inside.

sa labas pa lang, kanya-kanyang picture na...

An entrance fee of Php 100/- each is worth to see the distinctive art collection inside. A receptionist greeted us with her charming smile while requesting us to write our name on the guestbook. From there, she led us to Patio Salvador, an open terrace, where we saw the diverse painting of Sabel on the wall. Sabel, not known to many, is a real-life scavenger woman who lived most of her life in poverty then ended being a mentally-challenge. Back in the year 1965, Sabel were walking in the street when Mr. Benedicto Cabrera (BenCab) spot and took a photo of her. He made a sketched of Sabel which eventually became his substance through the years. We thanked our informative guide for revealing the story of Sabel.

SABEL: one of the best-known muse of BenCab

After an inspiring story about Sabel, we headed to Gallery Indigo.

Inside the gallery, there is an eye-catching old-type chair which according to our guide could make the person relax and enjoy the abundance after lying on it. She also teach us the correct position of lying down.

hay nakaka-relax!

The gallery shelter a life-size painting that truly alluring. It takes a lot of passion to finish one-of-a-kind masterpiece. Super galing! According to our guide, the painting symbolize the relationship between a man and a woman.

Awesome!

Since we had a minor in our group, she’s not allowed to enter in Erotica Gallery. The small quarter in the museum reserved painting and artistic sculpture which is not suitable for young visitors. Sorry if I can’t feature the photo here because it might cause offense to some under 18 readers. Let the pictures we took remain private in our gadget. Peace!

As we went along to see other work of arts, we stopped in the hallway for one canvas that indeed a walk-stopper among visitor. Everyone will magnetized on the surreal beauty that it holds. I keep on staring at the painting and somehow wish that i could take it home as souvenir.

ang painting na nang-akit sa aming mga mata! Sobrang galing ng artist!

our un-ending question: Why?

By the way, some of the painting are available for sale. When we asked the guide of what is the price range for each canvas she confidently answer us with Php 200K.

Every corner in the museum tells a story. Like the hallway in the 1st floor where Bulol, god of rice fields, were on display portraying different stages and position.

We also explore Bencab Gallery where most of National Artist for Visual Arts, Mr. Bencab’s masterpiece and collection were arrange properly for public viewing.

Reunion by Bencab (he loves to paint family matters)

A breath of fresh air from the veranda gives a relaxing effect to us.

we're so happy!

Overlooking to the mountainous side of Baguio and look what we found below……. a beautiful nipa hut surrounded with man-made lake.

During that time the place were semi-blanketed with fog. Somewhere in our mind we wish to go there and embrace the simplicity of the garden. Suddenly, our guide smiled and allowed us to tour the garden. Whaaattttt? I thought it was a private resthouse but then again, it still part of the museum. Wow! Another amazing discovery about Bencab Museum.

We tour the rest of the museum after a panoramic sightseeing. Some of the old kitchen utensils, weapons and other crafts were put together under one area of Cordillera Gallery.

Bencab museum is built not only to exhibit the artistic aptitude of Mr. Benedicto Cabrera but also it alloted some space for other filipino artist to showcase their talent. Here are some of the display in Philippine Contemporary Art Gallery:

"Wag mong damdamin ang mga bagay, dahil ang mga bagay ay walang damdamin"... Tama!

Neos by Mark Tandoyog

Baby Sandata 2 by Lirio Salvador

On our way to the farm, we pass to Cafe Sabel where a visitor can dine it while they enjoy the view outside. Since we don’t have much time to sit back we headed to the garden for some picture taking and feel the good ambiance of green surrounding. It’s really amazing to know that this small area is an extension of the museum. According to our guide, Mr. Bencab owns a house nearby the museum so that he can visit the place anytime.

Garden at the backside of the Museum

Moreoften, Museum is a place to discover the past and present work of an artist but it is my first time to encounter here in BenCab museum the true sense of learning experience on each canvas inside but also the enjoyable sightseeing outside. I may not be an inborn art aficionado but when I saw up close the various artist works here in BenCab Museum, I can’t help but to admire their skills and personal touch on their very own masterpiece.

BenCab Museum, Km 6, Asin Road, Tuba, Benguet, Philippines,(+6374-442-7165)

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