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The Museum experience

Located at the facade of the equally stunning Yuchengco Hall, The Museum houses a multitude of interesting artworks and odd creations, inviting you to the perfect abode to momentarily escape the pains of academic reality.

“There’s a museum inside the campus?” the typical Lasallian might ask.

The Museum might be a church for the art enthusiasts, a sanctuary for the lone wolves, or a haven for the hermits. The truth is, everybody else is welcome, so you don’t have to be artsy-fartsy or melodramatic to visit The Museum.

Located at the facade of the equally stunning Yuchengco Hall, The Museum houses a multitude of interesting artworks and odd creations, inviting you to the perfect abode to momentarily escape the pains of academic reality.

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Willi and Doreen Fernandez Collection

Upon entering The Museum, visitors will be welcomed by the Willi and Doreen Fernandez art collection signage, giving a hint to what the visitors can expect inside.

The donors of this compendium of artworks are Willi and Doreen Fernandez, a couple deeply engaged in varying forms of art.

Willi is an esteemed world-class interior designer who is also one of the founding members of the Philippine Institute of Interior Design. Doreen, on the other hand, is a renowned food critic and a historian who writes mostly about literary and culinary history. She is also a founder of the Worldwide People Power Foundation, the harbinger of today’s Eggie Apostol Foundation.

This fervid passion and dedication for art has helped them land their chosen careers, and would later on become their prime motivation to build the Willi and Doreen Fernandez Collection.


What’s inside?

Curated by Ms. Lalyn Buncab, the entire museum is filled with various forms of art, including sculptures, drawings, paintings, sketches, and mixed media.

Most of the artworks are hung on the white walls and dividers illuminated by the cozy spotlights, accentuating the strokes and contours present in the artworks.

Every term, the museum has a new theme which they use as basis for what artworks from the collection will be exhibited.

Patterns: In Layers of Meaning, for instance, is the most recent show of the museum. The exhibition features artworks that play with recurrent elements likes shapes, lines, and colors in pursuit of producing symmetrical designs that visitors can view on different angles.

The museum is a fusion of traditional modern art and contemporary art, enabling the audience to grasp a holistic art experience. Many of the artworks from the Willi and Doreen Fernandez collection and the university collection are donated by National Artists like Fernando Amorsolo, Carlos “Botong”, Cirilo Bautista, and Ibarra Dela Rosa.

Much like other art galleries, The Museum also boasts of special artwork collections such as rare drawings of Botong Francisco, Bencab, and Amorsolo. Artworks of prominent contemporary artists, like Justin Nuyda, Virgilio Avidao, Pablo Baen-Santos, and Angelito Antonio, are also included. In addition, the curator invites other artists whose artworks are aligned with the current theme.

Some works are permanently exhibited in the museum, like Napoleon Abueva’s sculpture seats. These sculptures, as the curator would suggest, can be seated on so the visitors can experience and feel the art on a more personal level.

Wall texts are found along the white dividers, which are intended to help the audience to further appreciate the art adjacent to it and gain knowledge of the current theme.

Striking quotations from the artists are also spread out along the museum. Among the quotations is Ang Kiuokok’s message to budding artists:“You have to find your inspiration in your canvas. You don’t sit down and wait for it to come. You start, and then the inspiration comes.”

There is an activity section in the rearmost part of The Museum where visitors can release their artistic expressions through the pen and paper, geometric rulers, Rubik’s Cubes, and geometric puzzles.


Why is it ignored?

“…Maybe it’s because we’re not a museum-going culture,” shares The Museum’s curator Ms. Lalyn Buncab.

Despite all of the positive attributes one can gain from acknowledging and experiencing the world inside the museum, a lot of Lasallians still seem to feel indifferent towards the museum.

Tyra (AB-LIM, 113) explains that The Museum might lack publicity and promotion. She says that while the looming banner hanging in front of the Yuchengco Hall might be big enough for the whole Lasallian community to see, she feels that there is still a need for a lot of encouragement and promotion.

Some of the students who pay a visit to the museum are either required by a HUMALIT or INTFILO professor to fulfill a certain activity.

Dr. Vicente Groyon of the Literature department, however, does not require his students to go the museum. He reasons out by saying that because the generation of youth today are so obsessed with night parties and bass-deep thrumming tunes, it would be arduous for them to just stand in front of an artwork and appreciate it in sheer silence.


A place for meditation

While most of the students who pay a visit to the museum are either just required or encouraged by their professors on their HUMAART classes, there are still students who visit the museum out of their own curiosity or interest in the arts.

On one visit, we spot Kathleen Kato, a business major who is carefully inspecting each artwork that she encounters.

Saying that lately, everyone has been so much into the social media, Kathleen shares how much she wanted to see what the university museum had to offer. “I was inspired to be more open to absorbing art,” she shares.

To Kathleen, the museum seems spacious; spacious enough for her to appreciate and absorb the message and meanings of each artwork. Adding to that, she also feels that the instrumental song played in the background also adds to the cozy ambiance that the museum elicits.

When asked why she thinks the artworks are not allowed to be taken photographs of, Kathleen tells that it is for the preservation the art, as when people take pictures of them, they tend to instantly post it to social media sites. “I prefer art to be consumed in a respectful manner. It’s not for the absorption of the social media, it’s for the absorption of the spectators,” she shares.

Ms. Maye, one of the staff of the museum, also shares that more and more students are going to the museum to merely observe and appreciate the artworks. “Some of the students who are working on with a story or piece of art come here to get inspiration from the exhibited artworks,” she shares.


Future Events and Activities

The Museum continues to hold events and activities in the hope of raising art appreciation and cultural consciousness among the students and other members of the Lasallian community.

In partnership with the DLSU Culture and Arts Office (CAO), The Museum will have a month long celebration in October, with various shows and activities already in line. Every Friday of October, art exhibits, talks by art educators and art critics, and performances will be held.

The Museum is also opening their docent training program to students who wish to be involved in the activities held by the museum, including interactive tour guiding, workshops, and lectures.

The existence of The Museum in the university only goes to show that the library is not the only place to go to veer away from academics. The benefits of going to The Museum may not be as apparent as going to the library to read books, but the existence of The Museum reminds us that nourishing the soul is just as important as nourishing the mind.

Cirilo Cariga

By Cirilo Cariga

Keenan Jeffrey Artis

By Keenan Jeffrey Artis

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