5 things not to miss in Angono, Rizal

Just an hour away from Manila, Angono is the place to view artworks by Filipino masters and promising young artists, and look up ancient petroglyphs

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The Blanco Museum

The Blanco Museum which sits in a 1,200sqm property, surrounded by a landscaped garden, houses famous Filipino muralist painter Jose "Pitok" Blanco's body of work, including two of his major works —the Angono Fisherman Festival, a mural that took two years to finish, with Blanco painting in about a hundred real locals from Angono; and the rather dark and evocative Burning of Angono painting. The Blanco Museum was set up by Blanco and his wife Loring and seven children to showcase not just Blanco's works, but that of his family members. On exhibit are works of Jose Blanco from 1962, showing his early penchant for dark browns and thick brush strokes to the 70s, marked by his stylized approach, merging warm and cool colors.
Blanco Museum, 312-B Ibanez Street, Barangay San Vicente, Angono, Rizal, tel +632 651 0048.

Nemiranda Arthouse

The Nemiranda Arthouse, set up by Filipino artist Nemesio B. Miranda, houses his various works and that of Angono's local artist. Miranda is known for introducing imaginative figurism. His notable works include the relief sculpture of the "History of the Philippine Army" in Fort Bonifacio, the EDSA Shrine Mural, the People Power I painting, and EDSA II relief sculptures. Miranda has had over 50 exhibitions in various countries.
The artist has also been active in art causes, helping struggling young artists. He co-founded the Angono Ateliers Association, dedicated to molding upcoming artists and established the Angono Visual Art School, the first school of painting in Angono, in 1991.
Nemiranda Arthouse, #6 Dona Elena Street, Dona Justa Village, Phase I, Angono, Rizal. Tel +632 451 1580. Nemi R. Miranda, Jr.

Filipino national artist Carlos "Botong" Francisco's house

Botong Francisco's grandson, Carlos Francisco II, at the national artist's house

See the house where Philippine National Artist for Visual Arts Carlos "Botong" Francisco grew up in, housing his memorabilia, including his early sketches and easels, drafting table, awards and photos. Part of the house has been converted and restored into a gallery and museum. The late artist's grandson, Carlos Francisco II or Totong, runs the house in memory of the national artist. Totong is also a painter and some of his works are also on display. 
Carlos "Botong" Francisco's house is located in Dona Aurora Street, Barangay Poblacion Itaas, Angono, Rizal. Most of Francisco's major works are exhibited at the National Museum.

Tiamson Art Gallery

Tiamson Art Gallery houses the work of painter and transmedia artist Orville Tiamson, whose style are quite varied, from cubist figures, realist portraits of street children to the abstract blurs representing marine life. His subjects include street children, market place scenes, village life and his abstract paintings are inspired by marine life.
Tiamson Art Gallery  is located at Pag-asa, Binangonan, Rizal, less than a minute a way from Angono. Open daily from 9am to 5pm. Saturdays and Sundays are by appointment. For inquiries call +63917 661 3522 or orvilletiamsonstudio@gmail.com.

Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs

The Angono-Binangonan Petroglyphs, one of the only two petroglyphs found in the country, feature etchings on one side of a large rock that dates back to 3,000 BC. Studies are ongoing to establish the age of the petroglyphs. National artist Carlos "Botong" Francisco discovered the etchings in 1966 when he was out in the area camping with friends. A museum has now been erected on the site. 
For more information, contact the National Museum Central Office at tel+632 527 4192. 
 

Originally published in InFlight Traveller August to September 2013. Updated May 2016