One of the famous attractions in Makati is the Ayala Museum, it is an art and history museum located at the corner of Makati Avenue and De la Rosa Street in Makati City, Legaspi Village. It is considered one of the most important private institutions of Philippine art and culture.
It is envisioned in the 1950’s by the late artist, Fernando Zobel de Ayala y Montojo, the Ayala Museum became a reality in 1967 as a project of the Ayala Foundation, Inc. (then known as the Filipinas Foundation, Inc.). The museum’s first home was in the Insular Life Building on Ayala Avenue in Makati. In 1974, the first Ayala Museum building on Makati Avenue, designed by the late National Artist for Architecture, Leandro V. Locsin, was inaugurated. The museum’s current building on the corner of De La Rosa Street was formally dedicated on September 28, 2004. It was Ayala’s gift to the Filipino people in celebration of the Ayala Corporation’s 170th anniversary. Led by Leandro Y. Locsin, Jr, the museum was designed by the architectural firm Leandro V. Locsin and Partners.
Archaeological and ethnographic objects from the country’s northern and southern cultural communities complement the historical collection. The fine arts collection features important works by three painters considered pioneers in Philippine art–Juan Luna (1857-1899), Fernando Amorsolo (1882-1972), and Fernando Zobel (1924-1984). Genre paintings from the 19th century Philippines are represented. This period reflect some of Europe’s liberal ideas that gave rise to secular themes in Philippine art and popularized new modes of expressions.
Forming the core of the museum’s historical collections are sixty handcrafted dioramas that chronicle the rich tapestry of Philippine history. Ayala Museum also features a one-of-a-kind boat gallery showcasing miniatures of some of the watercrafts that contributed to the development of Philippine maritime trade and colonial economy.
Aside from the permanent collections, the Ayala Museum also plays host to changing exhibitions, which may feature the works of young visual artists, ethnographic items, major art pieces on loan from private or foreign collectors, or historical photographs. These unique exhibitions exemplify the Ayala Museum’s embrace of the old and the new, the local and the global, the traditional and the progressive.
The museum is also an ideal venue for special events, such as conferences, open-air concerts and programs, and cocktail or dinner receptions. It has a spacious and elegant lobby, state-of-the-art conference and meeting rooms, a glassed-in gallery, and a plaza surrounded by a Zen-inspired garden.
And what museum would be complete without a shop? Featuring items inspired by the museum’s various collections, the shop is a great place to find items that evoke the grandeur of what visitors have just seen but are small enough to be taken home.