Katharina Goes Places: Museo Orlina

Disclaimer: This is almost a year late, but whatever, I’d love to post it anyway. I told you, I have a lot of catching up to do!

Museo Orlina is a glass museum located in Tagaytay. It is the showcase of the artistry of internationally acclaimed Ramon Orlina, pioneer and foremost practitioner of glass sculpture in the country.

After around 3 hours of travel from Los Baños, this site will captivate you. The building itself is such an artwork for someone who is an art-enthusiast like me. Outside the building is a carport displays automotive vehicles that literally served as canvas for Ramon Orlina, National Artist BenCab and Elmer Borlongan.

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Behind me in this photo is the Bencab Artcar, 2-13 VW Super Beetle 1303S 1974 model. The other car is the MONDRIAN Art Car Volvo 780 Coupe Limited Edition by Bertone. Unfortunately, I lost my photo with this car and it was so hard to take nice photos outside because it was scorching hot when we arrived Museo Orlina.

The museum has a four levels of exhibit area (each floor was named after Orlina’s children), a sculpture garden and amphitheater, and a roof deck to enjoy the spectacular view of Taal Lake.

Level 1: Naesa

The first floor is where the reception area is, along with the first few glass pieces. This floor reflects the dynamism of Philippine contemporary art.

The Reflections Gallery spills onto the Lower Level that opens up through a doorway to the sculpture garden.

Level 2: Ningning

This level contains two galleries. One gallery exhibits the early pieces that paved distinct directions to the immense potentiality of glass. The other gallery exhibits his more recent works, a veritable treasure trove of unrivalled Orlina masterpieces.

Each artwork screams meaning and depth. It is also very intricately made which truly captured me.

Level 3: Anna

This floor showcases the maquettes and photographs of Orlina’s monumental indoor and outdoor works here and abroad over a span of three decades.

His famous sculptures of Ms. Cory Aquino, Piolo Pascual, and other personalities are also located in this level.

Roof Deck: Michael 

The last floor was the roof deck which was named after his only son, Michael. The windswept terrace opens up to the Museum with a view of the Taal lake and volcano. Walking through the different floors of the museum was a bit tiring thus, we spent quite a while in this roof deck. It was very picturesque, I am so sad that the my photos were deleted.

We didn’t get the chance to explore the sculpture garden since, as mentioned earlier, it was too hot when we arrived. Nonetheless, I had a lot of fun appreciating the marvelous art works in this museum and I can honestly say that the 100 PHP entrance payment is very much worth it (80 PHP for senior citizens and those students with their I.D.) Definitely a must visit for me!

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Catherine is a 20-something BS Nutrition student of the University of the Philippines, but her heart screams for the art. She is a freelance creative and model, an artist and a writer, and an advocate of human rights and the environment.

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