We found ourselves on the road again. We wanted to acquaint ourselves with the collection of the Philippine Artist Benedicto Cabrera for his great art contributions in the country which is called the BenCab Museum in Barangay Tadiangan of Tuba, Benguet. Our van seemed to be speeding up a little bit only to find out that we were running at a normal speed. I was really half awake when we arrived at the museum I thanked Azalea Residences for letting us use their van so all through out our trips I was sleeping comfortably at the back of our vehicle with the sound of the Cordillera folk songs.
The Museum features entirely a breathtaking and panoramic view of the lush vegetation and mini forest surrounded by rolling hills and the South China Sea in the distant West.
Everyone immediately took photos at the entrance venue. Once you reach the destination, one will be overwhelmed with the modern structure. Sitting at the top of the cliff just off the main road, the external side of the building is noticeably just a black and white background complementing the natural colors of the atmosphere.
There are so many artworks and exhibits you see around. I personally like the huge doors, relaxing high ceilings. The museum houses various art rooms and galleries created not only by Bencab including other great Filipino artists.
1. BENCAB GALLERY
This is the gallery that features all the masterpieces of BenCab. His artworks that started back in early 60’s. One of the highlights of the gallery is BenCab’s personal collection of his artwork. It also features his humble beginnings when he was starting until the evolution of his Artwork called “Sabel” which finally won him Filipino art collectors and eventually named National Artist for Visual Arts in year 2006 at the age of 64.
2. CORDILLERA GALLERY
This is actually the closest thing to preserving the rich cultural heritage and traditions in the region of Cordillera. The gallery houses a collection of artifacts and other indigenous crafts of the Northern Philippine Highlands. Carved objects like tables, spoon and fork, furnitures, baskets and weapons being used by the early ethnic groups.
3. PHILIPPINE CONTEMPORARY ART GALLERIES
Paintings, drawings, prints and sculpture can be seen here. Through the years, there are smaller exhibitions held here containing other art collections collected by BenCab.
4. MAESTRO GALLERY
Various artist like Aguinaldo, Chabet, Edades, Joya, Legazpi, Luz, Magsaysay-Ho, Sanso, Zobel and a lot more masters of Art can be witnessed here.
5. EROTICA GALLERY
You gotta love this.I myself was also amazed and overwhelmed with the paintings, sculptures and artworks by various artists with an erotic concept or subject.
The boys enjoying the erotic subject at the Erotica Gallery.
6. PRINT GALLERY
visit the most contemporary prints and photographs highlighting postcards of the Philippine Islands, photographs and vintage maps and prints.
7. BULOL WALL
This is a two story-high installation of Ifugao rice Gods or deities.
8. PATIO SALVADOR
This is an open terrace to be next to the Gallery Indigo and most of the time being used for receptions and art and sculpture shows.
9. LARAWAN HALL
Bencab’s Masterpiece “Sabel”
Larawan hall is being used as function rooms for art gatherings, workshops, conferences, film showings and other related activities.
That time in the afternoon, we finally visited the famous museum in the city of Pines. I really had so much fun. We also chanced upon seeing the pond below the cliff and the lush forest that surrounds it. The fog descended and completely surrounded us. We wanted to trek to the mini waterfalls but apparently the fog covered the whole area. We spent a little time at the eco trail but we were running out time so we went back to our van as we finally bid goodbye to our favorite museum in Baguio, the Bencab Museum.
But wait, there is more:
At the Bencab Museum, there is not only a collection of Arts and Sculptures there is also a beautiful Farm and Garden below which showcases organic farm producing indigenous architectures of the Ifugao, Kalinga and Bontoc. There is also a flowing river with cascading waterfalls. The lush vegetation and mini forest features an interesting eco trail which is the source of fresh spring water being used at the museum.
I strongly encourage you to visit the BenCab Museum when you go up to the City of
vanishing Pines or the Summer Capital of the Philippines. Savor the moment and spend a little time at the Cafe Sabel and discover the eco trail afterwards. The cafe offers fresh and organic food in a perfect ambiance that will surely feed your mind and soul. Who’s “Sabel’? Take time to find out.
The BenCab Museum is along Asin Road, in an area known as Km. 6, Tadiangan, Tuba, Benguet. It is recommended hire a private vehicle since public jeepney are limited or may not always be around within the area.
By private transport:
From Burnham Park, one must pass through Harrison Road, and at the stop light at the intersection, one must cross to Abanao Road. Once at the top of Abanao, there is another stop light. Drive to the left lane to reach Naguilian Road.
After reaching Naguilian Road, turn left just right before the Coo Yee San Mall. Drive straight down the hill till you get to Asin Road and watch for markers that indicate Km 6. BenCab Museum will be on the left side of the road and travel time takes about 15 minutes depending on traffic.
Tuesdays to Sundays from 9:00am to 6:00pm
Closed on Mondays, Christmas and New Years Day
Students and Senior Citizens with a valid ID Php80
Special and discounted rates for group tours
Full Disclosure: The group photo is courtesy of Dong Ho. The Trip to BenCab Museum is courtesy of our friends from Azalea Residences, our Official hotel during our trip to the Summer Capital of the Philippines.