The National Art Gallery
From the Administration building, through the Royal Palace, to the Museum.
Once the Administration building of Ottomans, then the official Palace of the Second Bulgarian Kingdom, now it is the home of Bulgarian art. It is also one of the stops in Sofia day tours.
The Palace or the National Art Museum is located on Alexander Battenberg Square.
Right after the Liberation from the Ottomans, Prince Alexander I gave the duty to an architect from Vienna to build the Royal Palace of Bulgaria.
Viktor Rumpelmayer started the construction in the year 1879. The place chosen for it used to be the Administration building of Ottomans in the past.
Despite the fact that the first stage of the construction process took seven years, the building became Residential Palace of the Royal family in 1882.
Second stage construction
The second stage of the construction process was under the supervision of architect Vriedrich Grunanger in the time of Ferdinand I. This time, a three-storey north-east wing was added to the Palace. This was used as a more residential part of the palace for the large Royal family. They even put a lift in the building.
As both architects were from middle Europe, the Palace is Neo-Baroque style. It has been designed to have a ground floor for the administration. Then above it were the ballrooms. And the service was on the third floor.
Another place to visit on our Sofia day tours is the Palace. There we can see the biggest collection that The National Art Museum holds.
After the establishment of a Communist Government in Bulgaria and the abolition of the monarchy, the Palace has been given to The National Art Gallery and became open for the public.
The Palace is not the first home for The National Art collection. The previous one had been destroyed in the bombings in 1943 and 1944. Good news is the whole collection has been secured before the bombings.
Visit the National Art Museum in the Sofia day tours
In the National Art Gallery, we are going to see examples of contemporary and National Revival art. Also the country’s largest collection of medieval paintings with more than four thousand icons.
The National Art Museum collection of Contemporary and New Bulgarian art covers the period since 1878 – the year of Bulgaria’s Liberation, up to the 1990s. The collection consists of more than 30 000 individual pieces of paintings, prints and sculptures. Surely we won’t see all of the 30 000 pieces in the Sofia day tours but you will get enough taste of Bulgarian art.
In the museum one can see the best achievement of Bulgarian sculpture of twentieth century. The museum also houses the most comprehensive painting collection by Bulgarian masters including really rich black and white drawings.
Let’s go and see the art museum, you will be amazed by it.