May 15, 2018

For more than 40 years, International Museum Day has been celebrated annually every May 18th. Museums around the world join in on the festivities organized by the International Council of Museums (ICOM) which aims to highlight the vital role that museums play in cultural exchange, enrichment of cultures and camaraderie through mutual understanding.

This year’s theme is “Hyperconnected museums: New approaches, new publics.”

Hyperconnectivity, however, is not only viewed in the context of technology but also hints at connections which museums and institutions are making to tie up different perspectives, like tapping into local curation initiatives by indigenous people and local institutions.

Some local museums, keen on the celebration which attracted more than 36, 000 institutions in some 157 countries last year, are also taking part by waiving admission fees to attract guests into their exhibits and installations. Not to mention free-for-all museums, like the National Museum, that is making art accessible to everyone, all throughout the year.

Here’s a list of participating museums that you can pay a visit free of charge in celebration of International Museum Day.


Yuchengco Museum

Photo Courtesy of Yuchengco Museum

The museum which opened its doors in 2005 houses the collection of Ambassador Alfonso T. Yuchengco which includes the works of prolific Filipino painters, Juan Luna, Fernando Amorsolo and Carlos “Botong” Francisco. Yuchengco Museum is also a partner institution of Samsung’s FACETS app which lets users have an immersive experience with the masterpieces through augmented reality technology.

RCBC Plaza, Corner Ayala & Sen. Gil J. Puyat Avenues Makati City

Free Admission on May 18, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.


Museong Pambata

Photo Courtesy of Museong Pambata Facebook Page

Catering to the curious young minds, Museong Pambata features hands-on displays and interactive installations that aims to provide an alternative classroom for the youth. With its collections of paintings, installations and theme rooms, young museum-goers are sure to be immersed in topics ranging from the environment to anatomy to historical mockups of old Manila.

Roxas Boulevard corner South Drive Ermita, Manila

Free Admission on May 18, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.


Metropolitan Museum of Manila

Photo Courtesy of Metropolitan Museum of Manila

Once an exclusive venue for international art exhibitions, the Metropolitan Museum is now home to contemporary art by both Filipino and foreign artists. It has hosted a plethora of artists and exhibits from David Medalla’s Cloud Canyon Bubble Machine to National Artist Benedicto Cabrera’s 50-year retrospective exhibit in 2015. Apart from free admission, they are also offering free guided tours for visitors from 11:00 am to 2:30 pm.

BSP Complex, Roxas Blvd, Malate, Manila

Free Admission on May 18, 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.


Bahay Tsinoy

Photo courtesy of Bahay Tsinoy Facebook Page

Opened in 1999, the museum was built to showcase the lasting influence of the Chinese in the country through exhibits that feature rare prints, photographs which depict early Chinese occupation and other artifacts like ceramics that date back to the early trades between the two cultures. The museum also houses a library dedicated to the collection of anthropologist Chinben See that contains more than 8,000 books, and other publications including an extensive Filipiniana collection.

32 Anda corner Cabildo St., Intramuros Manila, Philippines

Free Admission on May 18, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.


Ayala Museum

Ayala Museum launched the Virtual Reality Experience of Philippine History last year in commemoration of Dr. Jose Rizal’s 156th birthday

A true testament to this year’s theme, Ayala Museum who recently launched its own app, is no stranger to the intersections of art and technology. Last year, it unveiled its showcase of Rizal which can be viewed through virtual reality technology; while earlier this year with Erwin Wurm’s One Minute Sculptures, Ayala Museum gave guests a new approach to viewing art.

Makati Avenue corner De La Rosa Street Greenbelt Park, Makati City

Free Admission on May 20, 12 p.m. – 8 p.m.


Header photo courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Manila

Read more:

100-year old penitentiary in Iloilo is now a national museum

National Museum will have a space for Philippine sculpture soon

Fascination with Filipiniana: The Vargas Museum Collection

TAGS: art Ayala Museum Bahay Tsinoy International Museum Day Metropolitan Museum of Manila Museong Pambata museum Yuchengco Museum

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