Sunday, December 21, 2014

Small is Beautiful at Riverbanks Miniature Museum

If you want to experience how Captain Lemuel Gulliver probably felt when he traveled to Liliput, the best place to be is at the Miniature Museum at the 2nd level, E-com Building at Riverbanks Center in Barangka, Marikina City.

For those who don’t know, Gulliver is the main character of Jonathan Swift’s classic novel Gulliver’s Travels. In one of his many incredible journeys, Gulliver is shipwrecked and washed ashore on the island of Lilliput where the inhabitants are less than 6 inches tall.

One gets the same feeling inside the Miniature Museum, which houses the fantastic collection of over 60,000 miniatures made by the late artisan Alelie Lourdes Salinas Vengua. Vengua, an alumna of the Philippine Women’s University, was an interior decorator by profession who loved collecting small things as a child.

Her love is clearly shown in the Miniature Museum that features the realistic-looking miniatures that she painstakingly made through the years. Originally housed at her own home in 1977, Vengua’s stunning collection of miniatures was later transferred somewhere in Marikina when she passed away in 2004 before moving to its present location.

The spectacular pieces give new meaning to the phrase “small is beautiful” that was first popularized in 1973 by British economist E.F. Schumacher in his bestselling book of the same name. Indeed, Vengua’s pieces are a sight for sore eyes owing to their intricate detail and surprising realism.

The pieces are enclosed in shadow boxes that represent the 24 rooms of a European mansion. These include a garage, boy’s room, Christmas room, music room, master bedroom, and dining room, among others. What’s even more amazing is the fact that most of the things you’ll find there are made from scrap plastic, wood, aluminum, glass, and fabric.  
While Vengua is no longer with us, her inspiring work lives on in this unique collection - one of the many great attractions at Riverbanks Center. Be sure to make this one of your holiday destinations. You won’t regret it!

For more details visit The Spirit of Bethlehem & Miniature Museum