Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Philippine Gold: Treasures of Forgotten Kingdoms on view at Asia Society through January 2016

Asia Society and Ayala Museum, with special participation from Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), is presenting Philippine Gold: Treasures of Forgotten Kingdoms, a groundbreaking gold exhibition from the Philippines in New York through January 3,  2016. The exhibit features over 120 spectacular gold objects dated between the 10th and 13th century, on loan from the collections of Ayala Museum and the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

Ear OrnamentThe Philippine Gold exhibition in New York brings to fore in the world stage a truly fascinating yet little known aspect about the Philippines’ rich heritage.

Arm Ornaments Gold from BSP & Ayala MuseumOver view at Asia Society Museum are pre-colonial gold treasures such as gold necklaces, chains, waistbands, bangles, ritual bowls, implements, and ceremonial weapons. These rare artifacts reveal the sophisticated civilizations that flourished before the Spaniards arrived at Philippine shores. The gold pieces also portray the thriving maritime trade in the region, exemplifying the influence of Indians, Indonesians, and the Chinese, among other peoples, on the Philippine culture.

Ear ornaments 2Programs to expand the spotlight on Philippine culture include academic lectures, a pop-up Philippine food bar, musical events, art and design exhibitions, a film festival and live cultural performances. These activities will be supported by other events organized by Asia Society Philippines in Manila.

BElt - Gold from BSP & Ayala Museum copy 2Driving the Philippine Gold exhibition are Gala Benefit Committee chairs Doris Masaysay-Ho, Fernando Zobel de Ayala, and Loida Nicolas Lewis, with support from BSP Governor Amando Maglalang Tetangco. For this national undertaking, they have entrusted Nina Capistrano-Baker, curator at Ayala Museum, and Adriana Proser, John H. Foster Senior Curator for Traditional Asian Art at Asia Society New York, to co-curate the Philippine gold treasures at the New York exhibition.

ear ornaments 5Doris Magsaysay-Ho, Asia Society Philippine chair, believes that the Philippine Gold exhibition is extremely timely just as the country hosts the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) CEO Summit this November. “While the Philippines has a lot of press coming out on economic issues, we thought there could also be a cultural story,” says Magsaysay-Ho. “These artifacts are also very little known scholarship-wise, so with the opportunity to bring them to New York, we are holding symposiums that place the collection in the whole realm of historical scholarship in the Austronesian context.”

Bangle - Gold from BSP & Ayala Museum copy 5Ayala Corporation’s Fernando Zobel de Ayala anticipates the pride the exhibition will instill in Filipinos around the world. “We are delighted to have this opportunity to exhibit this exceptional Filipino 10th to 13th century gold from the Ayala Museum and Bangko Sentral collections at the Asia Society in New York”, says Zobel de Ayala. “It will give Americans and visitors to New York the opportunity to get to know more about our rich culture and I have no doubt that it will also give Filipino Americans great pride to see these pieces from their country.”

Waistband - Gold from BSP & Ayala Museum copy 4BSP Governor Amando Maglalang Tetangco, Jr. says that “This exhibit is an excellent opportunity to showcase our pre-colonial cultural heritage. This is going to be the first time that the Philippine pre-Hispanic gold will be seen in the States. This is an opportune time for other people to know more about the Philippines and get to know the rich cultural heritage of our country.”

Waist Cord Weights- Gold from BSP & Ayala Museum copy 3Philippine Gold: Treasures of Forgotten Kingdoms is made possible by Ayala Corporation, with additional support provided by exhibition partners Bank of Philippine Islands, Del Monte Foods, Inc., Philippine Airlines, ABS-CBN The Filipino Channel and Tourism Promotions Board Philippines and exhibition benefactors CLSA, Coca-Cola FEMSA Philippines, First Philippine Holdings Corporation, Goldman Sachs Gives, J.P. Morgan, Philam Life, an AIA Company, San Miguel Corporation, UBS AG and Western Union®. Philippine media partners are Philippine Daily Inquirer and Philippine Tatler.

For more information, please visit To arrange a group tour of this special exhibition in New York, please call + 1 212.327.9237 or email 

Asia Society Museum is located at 725 Park Avenue (at 70th Street), New York City. HoursareTuesday through Sunday from 11:00 A.M. – 6:00 P.M. and Friday from 11:00 A.M. – 9:00P.M. Closed on Mondays and major holidays. General admission is $12, seniors $10, students $7, and free for members and persons under 16. Free admission on Friday evenings, 6:00P.M. – 9:00 P.M. The Museum is closed Fridays after 6:00 P.M. from July 1 through Labor Day. Find out more at

Lia Chang

Lia Chang

Lia Chang is an award-winning filmmaker, a Best Actress nominee, a photographer, and an award-winning multi-platform journalist. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Blog, Jade Magazine and

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