Travelers who come to Lviv for the first time can be overwhelmed by the number of museums, art galleries and architectural landmarks. This city is considered to be the cultural capital of Ukraine and it often appears on the avant grade of the local art scene. «Destinations» rounds up the list of Lviv art museums worth visiting. From impressively vast national art gallery to the small indie art spaces, all the art fans will find something interesting for themselves.
It’s only logical that our list should start from the National Lviv Art Gallery. Possibly the finest art museum in Ukraine, Lviv Art Gallery, is home of more than 60,000 pieces of art from all over the world. Lviv's main art repository has two wings: one is located in the lavish Pototsky Palace, and the other one is just around the corner on Stefanyka street. The Pototsky Palace wing houses an impressive collection of European art of 14th-18th centuries, including the works of Rubens, Bruegel, Goya and Caravaggio. The wing on Stefanyka street contains 19th- and early-20th-century art as well as some 21st-century pieces. Superb collection of Polish art with some works by Jan Matejko is also presented over here.
Georges de la Tour’s “Payment of Dues” and Tiziano Vecellio’s “Portrait of a Man» are the pride of the museum.
Address: 3, Stefanyka street, Lviv.
Read: Lviv Art Galleries Worth Visiting
Lviv National Museum (20, Svobody Avenue, Lviv), located just to the right of Lviv Opera House, awes numerous travelers with its grand architectural style. It is one of Ukraine's largest museums, dedicated to Ukrainian art and culture in all its manifestations. It was established by Metropolitan Archbishop Andrey Sheptytsky in 1905 and was originally known as the Lwow Ecclesiastical Museum. It currently bears Sheptytsky's name. The important part of the collection is formed of at least 4000 ancient icon-paintings and traditional Ukrainian sacral sculpture. A set of Ukrainian folk and professional engravings dating back to the 17th and 18th centuries are of great value to the museum from a Ukrainian cultural viewpoint; over 1000 items are showcased at the museum. The museum offers the exhibition of paintings of Johann Georg Pinsel, Maciej Polejowski, Michał Filewicz and others.
The National Museum of Lviv also has a number of important manuscripts, some of them are very unique such as Cracow publications by Schweipolt Fiol (1491-1493), Prague and Vienna printings by Francysk Skaryna, and virtually all of Ivan Fedorov's publications.
Read: Lviv Museums Worth Visiting
Moving away from the city center, Sheptytskyy Historical Museum Complex (42, Dragomanova street, Lviv) is another destination art fans will enjoy attending. This museum is situated in one of the residential areas of Lviv. Housed in a magnificent 19th century palace, this historical museum complex has a permanent exhibition of fine Ukrainian art of the 20th century. Often tourists don’t even know about the existence of the museum, but are mesmerized by the beauty of the building when passing by. Due to long years of abandonment and recent reconstruction that took over five years, this museum is not among Lviv must-see places. However, the collection of the museum is truly remarkable and will pleasantly surprise art lovers. The concept of the exhibition is a retrospective of national art during the modern era. The collection is exhibited in 5 halls and in the courtyard of the palace.
Lviv Art Palace (17, Copernicus street, Lviv) is mostly famous to be the key location during annual Lviv Book Forum. It is also the biggest exhibition space in the city. Lviv Art Palace often hosts art exhibitions and festivals. It has no permanent exhibit, but its schedule is always full of interesting art events.
As for the Lviv indie galleries, local art scene is booming with art spaces and galleries, with something new opening each year. In case you don’t have too much time for your art museum sightseeing in Lviv, but still want to experience local art atmosphere, we suggest to visit «Dzyga».
Cultural and Art Center. «Dzyga» is an iconic Lviv art space. This legendary gallery hosts numerous exhibitions of the most famous Ukrainian artists as well as the works of young talented painters and sculptors. «Dzyga» is something more than just a gallery. It is a place where local bohemian life is booming. The cafe located in the gallery is always packed with artsy boho crowd. «Dzyga» often hosts live gigs, art lectures, literature readings and book signing sessions.
Address: 35, Virmenska street, Lviv.
Photo source: shutterstock.com, pinterest.com, lpm.com.ua.