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Blanco Renaissance Museum is an art museum located in Ubud, Bali that was found by a famous painter named Antonio Blanco.
Witness the beauty of Balinese in Blanco Renaissance Museum
Don Blanco or Mario Antonio Blanco was born on 15 September 1911 in Manila, Philippines. His parents were Spanish, that is believed by Blanco as a reason for him to be linked geographically and spiritually with Salvador Dali. He studied at American Central School in Manila and has been showing interest in arts, literature, and language class. After finishing high school, Blanco studied in National Academy of Art in New York under Sidney Dickinson and concentrated on the human form, fascinated by the female body more than any other subject matter. He then traveled around the world before finally came to Bali in 1952. His home and studio in Campuan, Ubud, was given by the King of Ubud at that time. He also married a Balinese dancer named Ni Ronji. After acquiring many collectors from his trip to the United States, the couple never left their home again. Blanco lived and worked in his home until his death in 1999.
Blanco Renaissance Museum was built in the location of his former house on the hilltop of Campuan, Ubud. The museum was built based on the image of Bali is Blanco's eyes, combined with his Spanish influence. The three stories of the building are symbolic of Balinese faith that represent the Upper, Middle and Lower worlds where Gods, Man, and Demons resides in their own place. This is why the top level is where Blanco put his best works. The museum was opened on 28 December 1998, with the name of Blanco Renaissance Museum. Now, the museum houses over 300 of painting collections that were painted by Don Blanco himself as a proof of his love to the land of Bali.
Once you stepped inside the museum area, you will already see the beauty of Blanco Renaissance Museum. Before entering the building of the museum, you will find a big garden with a fountain in front of the building that represents the waves of the sea. There are also some colorful Balinese birds that you will find. Then, on the front part of the museum, there are a pair of stairs symbolizing the duality in the material world. Then, there are two massive mythical stone dragons that guard a green Italian marble with the height of 15 metres. Inside the museum, you won't see a window, but there is a stunning stained glass dome roof draws in rays of natural sunlight. The architecture of the museum that is designed carefully is an evidence of the dream world that Blanco wanted to recreate.
As you walk in the building, you will see many colorful nude paintings hang on the wall with lavish and unusual frames. While if you head to the studio, you will see various collections with paintings from 60s eras and paintbrushes and dried paint of an unfinished artwork. This is where most people are usually take photos while act as the painter. Since there are a lot of nudity shown in the paintings, the museum is not very recommended for children. There are also a lot paintings that were left on the floor, that are probably the works of Blanco's son. If you are a fan of his works, then you can buy the Litographs of Blanco or books about him that are sold in the museum. After that, you can head to the exit through a private parking shed.
In the museum area, there is a modern Indonesian Gastronomic restaurant named Blanco par Mandif. Here is the place for you to get your free welcome drink after you purchased a ticket for the museum. There are indoor and outdoor seatings that you can choose. It is recommended to sit outside to relax and enjoy the view of the city. Just like the museum that is filled with beautiful paintings, the dishes in this restaurant are made beautifully like works of art.
How to Get Tickets?
Tickets can be bought on the spot when you arrived at the location. If you are coming in a large group, you can also book for tickets online by contacting the museum directly. This way, you can safe some time and skip the queue.
How To Get Around?
To get around, you will have to go by foot.
What Should I Wear?
There is no recommendation about what to wear when visiting Blanco Renaissance Museum. You can wear a nice dress because some spots can be great for photos. Be noted to check the weather before you go because you will walk through the garden first before going inside the museum.
Best Time to Visit
The best time to visit will be during dry season so that the chance of rain is smaller. It is also better to visit the museum in the morning so you will meet less crowd and can enjoy every paintings longer.
Will I Need a Guide?
You don't need a guide to explore Blanco Renaissance Museum. You will find the explanation about the paintings along with the exhibitions. If you want to ask, you can ask the staff of the museum inside the museum.
How To Get There?
To get to Blanco Renaissance Museum, you can rent a motorbike, car, or a bicycle from the center of Ubud in Art Market area. From there, the Blanco Renaissance Museum is only 10 minutes driving. Be noted that there is no public transportation that can take you directly to this place.