Yoga session in front of 'Spoliarium' at National Museum rakes reactions

MANILA, Philippines – There's currently a heated discussion on social media whether it was appropriate to use the spacious hall in front of Juan Luna's painting "Spoliarium" inside the National Museum of the Philippines in Manila as the venue for a yoga session.

Yoga session in front of 'Spoliarium' at National Museum rakes reactions
Photo courtesy: Facebook/National Museum of the Philippines

The yoga session in front of the historic painting by Juan Luna, one of the museum's attractions, was shared on the National Museum of the Philippines' social media platforms.

The caption of the yoga video reads, "Earlier today, the National Museum of the Philippines conducted the first of four sessions of 'Yoga at the Museum' at the Spoliarium Hall in the National Museum of Fine Arts. 18 participants joined the first session, entitled 'Halina (to come).' The first session was a Vinyasa class taught by registered yoga instructor Allan Enriquez."

Netizens also shared their opinions on the matter.

“Are you out of your mind, people?”

"This is so awkward."

"What is this? That's one of our oldest masterpieces. I cannot see the significance of doing yoga in a supposedly controlled environment. The humidity content of the surrounding will definitely have an effect on The Spoliarium. Your strict protocols run counter to the purpose of this event."

"The organizers lack intelligence. You have no conscience. Do you know the value and spirit of that painting, and you turn it into a gym where people will sweat. What the...? Maybe a symposium or a history class for a limited time of 1 hour. What is this??? Seriously, you're turning your backside in a place of utmost respect..."

"This is insensitive considering that the iconic painting of Juan Luna should remind us that our collective ancestors died in the hands of our colonizers. The museum's multipurpose activity lawn should've been a better choice for that..."

“What is happening on earth?”

Recently, the National Museum issued guidelines regarding the respect for the artworks inside the museum, including consideration and compliance with a dress code when visiting.

Earlier, they had made an announcement on Facebook about organizing four complimentary yoga and meditation sessions within the renowned Spoliarium Hall as part of the event series titled "Yoga at the Museum."

The iconic painting is housed in the primary gallery on the first floor of the National Museum of Fine Arts in Manila.

This initiative is aligned with Museum and Galleries Month, with its overarching theme being "Exhibits and Reflections: Paving the Way for Opportunities in the New World."

Meanwhile, there hasn't been a formal statement from the National Museum's management regarding netizens’ reactions and concerns about it.

— Richard, The Summit Express

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