When was the last time you visited a house-like museum? You will probably agree that only by knowing our origins can we create a meaningful future. So the house-museum of the painter and collector Kazys Varnelis (1917-2010) is a great opportunity to get to know your history. It’s the first collector's museum in Lithuania.
The small halls, which are rich in ancient Gothic architectural details, feature exhibits of historical graphics, maps and Western European sculpture, which are complemented by Renaissance and Baroque furniture ensembles as well as abstract works by K. Varnelis.
The harmony created by contrast makes the exposition exceptional. K. Varnelis’ collection accumulated over 50 years and significantly enriches the collection of Lithuanian cultural treasures, fills in the gaps of the collections in Lithuania, and introduces new exhibition principles.
Kazys Varnelis is known as a painter, collector and bibliophile. While still a student, he travelled to Samogitia collecting works of folk art that he subsequently photographed and drew. While working as Director of the Museum of Ecclesiastical Art in Kaunas during the war, K. Varnelis gained the experience necessary to become a future collector.
While living in Western Europe and the USA, he was constantly interested in auctions. He has acquired a number of professional works of art at auctions in Frankfurt, Paris, Vienna and other cities.
Varnelis returned to Lithuania in 1998, bringing his collection with him, which now serves as the basis of the Kazys Varnelis Museum. In 2003, his collection was granted national status and became the branch of Kazys Varnelis House-Museum of the Lithuanian National Museum.