It all started with a question from Cee’s Share Your World…
“your favorite place within two hours of your home?**”
My mind automatically turned north to where my Beloved’s ancestral home was, a 2 hour trip if he was driving. My own roots are much further to the south. I mentioned that the hills and mountains east of where we live weren’t my favorite but I realized that this was so because we haven’t really explored that area.
So on our first free weekend I planned a trip to the eastern hills.
Our trip brought us here…
The old converted home of a doctor who decided to support young contemporary artists by building this a number of years ago…
On the 1.2 hectare property, the older children and I climbed stairs….
and met new and interesting figures….
then climbed more stairs….
It’s been ages since I’ve entered an art gallery. This was my children’s first time to be in one. But when I entered the main hall, it seemed like it was the first time I saw one, too. I was in awe at the size of this one…
and the number of paintings in this room alone…
as well as the different media used…
Afterwards, we needed to rest. We climbed back up to the old house. But when we got there, the old hiker in me couldn’t resist exploring the backyard. I felt transported to a different world. There were choices to make…
I took the path that looked less travelled and eventually found myself looking for a little frog that hopped away in surprise…can you find him?
But eventually, my feet got really tired…and I decided to rest.
My Beloved, bless his loving heart, took care of the little one who decided that a nap was better than looking at paintings and sculptures. They joined us back at the old house when he woke up to run and play a little as I watched the sun setting into the horizon.
We met Andy Orencio, one of the artists who created the huge painting up there. He was a very likeable and low-key guy who shared the story behind the Museum, Gallery and the Garden and even offered to show his studio nearby. The children were very tired by this time so we declined his offer. Mikey Blanco was the warm and friendly dude (curator and receptionist in one?) who answered the phone when I first made inquiries and gave us directions how to get there.
It was a precious time we spent together as a family, the whole trip lasted only 4 hours, and the drive was only 15 minutes from our home! I must say that we will be returning there as there were 3 more mini-galleries we didn’t get to see.
The Pinto Art Museum is run by the Silangan Foundation for the Arts, Culture and Ecology. The buildings that house the galleries are wonderful examples of “ecological architecture”, building structures to fit the terrain rather than cutting down whole mountain-sides to make way for the buildings. Some of the rocks that were part of the original landscape were used or left where they were found and the buildings created around them.
The property itself is a welcome break from the city. Here are just a few more pictures of what you’ll see there:
DD inherited my Sony Cybershot when I got my new camera and has been practising ever since. Here are a couple of her shots from the trip:
Note for the local homeschoolers: You can combine a lot of subjects into this trip: Art, History, Geography and Earth and Biological Sciences, from what you can find on the property. To make the most of the trip to this area you can also include a visit to the Angono Petroglyphs (an archaeological site) or visit nearby Angono town, home to many well-known artists. Our original destination was the archaelogical spot but it’s open only on week-days and you need to make an appointment with the Site Administrators as access is controlled to protect the site.
Pinto Art Museum / Silangan Foundation for the Arts, Culture and Ecology
Number 1, Sierra Madre Street
Grandheights, Antipolo City, Rizal
The Garden is open Wednesdays to Sundays. Gallery hours are from 9am to 6pm. You can contact them at +6326971015. Ticket price is PhP 150.00 for adults and PhP 75.00 for children aged 3 and above.
** That was Question # 1 from Cee’s Share Your World - Week 7, a weekly and fun getting-to-know-you Q & A that Cee founded and hosts.