Art, North Wing Gallery (Landing)

IMPERIAL MANILA: American Colonial Architecture and Urbanism, 1898-1942

IMPERIAL MANILA: American Colonial Architecture and Urbanism, 1898-1942
February 15 – 28, 2011
3F, Vargas Museum

Opening cocktails on
February 15, 2011, 4PM

At the closing of the 19th century, Manila, as a new American colonial city, received massive urban transformation aimed at concretizing America’s imperial imagination in the tropics. This imperial ambition drove the colonial authorities to structure Manila’s urban built environment as a model colonial outpost. This urban revision was initiated to facilitate efficient colonial governance and to signify the power and prestige of the new colonial order. Manila, perceived by the colonist as a pathologic space, became the vortex of colonial urban reengineering that systematically transformed the city into a sanitized, ordered, and regulated domain so structured to enhance the flow of economic activities. (G. Lico)


About Jorge B. Vargas Museum

It aims to preserve its collection donated by Jorge B. Vargas and conducts research, exhibitions, publications, and educational programs. The Vargas Museum and Filipiniana Research Center houses a museum, archives, and library devoted to the Philippine history, art, and culture from the late 19th century until the post-war era. Its main beneficiaries are students, faculty, researchers and scholars of the Philippines and Asia.


3 thoughts on “IMPERIAL MANILA: American Colonial Architecture and Urbanism, 1898-1942

  1. Mr. Borries,

    This exhibit was organized by Arch. Gerard Lico from the College of Architecture, University of the Philippines, Diliman. You may check his contact details here:

    Just send us an e-mail at if you have other inquiries.

    Posted by Jorge B. Vargas Museum | January 19, 2012, 1:36 pm
  2. Dear Sirs,
    I am an architect living in Berlin, Germany, and I am preparing a visit to Manila in March of next year (2013). I will come on a day trip and I would like to organize for my group a city tour based properly on colonial architecture and urbanism. Now I am looking for an Institute that is able to provide detailled informations and I am happy to have found this site. Are you able to get me in contact with the experts that have worked on the concern? And is the catalougue still available?
    Thanks for you help and best regards

    Stephan Börries

    Posted by Stephan Börries | January 11, 2012, 1:41 am

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