Library and Archives

The Library

The library houses a vast collection of 3,193 titles of books and 1, 542 volumes of periodicals documenting the varied interest of Mr. Vargas, especially in the areas of history, law, art, philatelic and numismatic. Organized from its specialized collection, the library has the following indices: Vargasiana (bibliography), Quezoniana (MLQ), Philippine art, numismatic, philatelic, ethnographic, and linguistic sources. It is an excellent venue for advanced scholars in a variety of disciplines to pursue their individual or institutional research, including access to manuscripts and rare books.

Filipiniana Archives

The U.P. Vargas Museum, more popularly known for its rich collection of artworks from renowned Filipino artists, is also home to a diverse body of archives and manuscripts that is considered to be a unique and primary source of historical information.

Based on an initial survey, the archives consist of 88 boxes or approximately 300 linear feet of loose documents such as artworks’ receipts, minutes of meetings, and correspondence; 332 volumes of scrapbooks including newspaper clippings, greeting cards, photographs, and events programs; and memorabilia such as trophies and plaques, hotel keys, matchboxes and lighters. Having served in various government positions such as being the Executive Secretary of President Manuel L. Quezon and mayor of Manila during World War II, Jorge B. Vargas’ archival collection is virtually a memory house of the Commonwealth era, American colonization and Japanese occupation. Moreover, the museum’s collection of records provides the appropriate contextual perspective to the artworks and to Vargas as a collector.

Schedule an Appointment

Please take note, appointments are required to gain access to the library and archives. For appointments, you may email Ms. Ma. Cecilia Raynera at vargasmuseum@gmail.com or vargaslibraryarchives@gmail.com; or simply fill out the form below:

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ADVISORY: In compliance with the announcement from Chancellor Michael Tan, the museum will be closed today, 23 April 2019. Summer Art Workshop with Mr. Fernando Sena is also suspended today. Inquiries: vargasmuseum@up.edu.ph
ADVISORY: In observance of the Lenten season, the museum will be closed on 17 April, 12 noon to 20 April 2019. Viewing of galleries and office operations will resume on 23 April 2019. Inquiries: vargasmuseum@up.edu.ph
Revisiting the Conservative 2019 Vargas Museum Art History Series Exhibition 3F Galleries 16 April - 15 June 2019 The Vargas Museum returns with its fifth iteration of its Art History Series exhibiting works from the Vargas collection curated based on art historical methods. The series strengthens the museum's efforts to continuously situate and contextualize its collection within today's social setting through the interaction between curatorship and art history. Revisiting the Conservative presents the realist traditions of painting idyllic scenes and themes exploring the Philippine landscape from the 1940s to the 1970s. The conservative as a category marks a particular stylistic tendency in Philippine art history. In terms of source, it can be traced to the academic realism of the nineteenth century that found its most prominent articulation in the exalted works of Fernando Amorsolo. It has been cast as a binary opposite of modernism as advocated by the practice of such artists as Diosdado Lorenzo and Victorio Edades. A body of polemical texts and institutional history sustains this interpretation even as the binary might not hold under a closer reading of the works and a more thoughtful appreciation of the artistic biographies of the practitioners, who slip in and out or even away from art history's order of things. In the possession of the collection of Jorge Vargas is a trove of pieces that exemplifies this conservative disposition. The latter would later be identified, or even conflated, with commercial art sold on Mabini Street, thus the term "Mabini Art". The exhibition scans the shift of realism in Philippine art as well as expressions of the supposed antithesis of the privileged modern. The exhibition consists of works by artists such as Elias Laxa, Romeo Enriquez, Cesar Buenaventura, Crispin Lopez, Serafin Serna, Miguel Galvez, Isidro Ancheta, Antonio Dumlao, Wenceslao Garcia, Gabriel Custodio, Ben Alano, Simon Saulog, and Diosdado Lorenzo. It also features a screening of the film Mga Uod at Rosas (1982), directed by Romy Suzara and written by Edgardo M. Reyes.
The Study Guide for The Nature of the Collection is now available for download: bit.ly/VMStudyGuideNature To view and download Study Guides for 2019, please visit: bit.ly/UPVMStudyGuides2019 The guides are designed for discussions and activities for classes in Humanities, Social Sciences, and other fields related to the exhibitions. It is encouraged that course tutors/teachers have a pre-visit to the exhibitions before the class’s actual visit. The study guides may be reproduced.
ADVISORY: The museum will be closed on 9 April 2019, Tuesday, in observance of Araw ng Kagitingan. However, the workshop area will be open for the 2019 Summer Art Workshop by Fernando Sena. Office operations and viewing of galleries resume on 10 April, Wednesday. Inquiries: vargasmuseum@up.edu.ph
ADVISORY: The museum will close early at 1 PM on 6 April 2019, Saturday for scheduled fumigation of galleries and offices. Interested participants of the 2019 Summer Art Workshop by Fernando Sena are encouraged to complete their registration this week. Office operations and viewing of galleries for next week will resume on 10 April, Wednesday. Inquiries: vargasmuseum@up.edu.ph

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