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See things for the first time

Artists let us see familiar things as though we were looking at them for the first time.

Life without art would be boring.

Dina and Jānis

Zuzāns

Zuzeum founders Dina and Jānis Zuzāns own the largest private collection of Latvian art in the world, encompassing works from the late 19th century to the present. The collection also includes the works of foreign artists, especially Russian nonconformists and Sots artists.

The family regularly supports art processes in Latvia, the representation of local art abroad, and art publishing.

Zuzeum will host
art exhibitions
talks
concerts
theatre performances and films
events in the sculpture garden
activities for children and young adults
The reconstruction project remains in progress, but Zuzeum is already happening — the historic building hosts various art and cultural events. The Zuzāns Collection also continues to grow.
How it all began

Late 1990s

Indulis Zariņš’s painting Artist’s Studio (Nude) becomes the starting point of the Zuzāns Collection.

Founding of the purvītis prize

January 2008

In collaboration with the Latvian National Museum of Art, Jānis Zuzāns founds the Purvītis Prize — now the most prestigious award in Latvian art.

Salon on Mūkusalas street

August 2010

The Zuzāns Collection finds its first permanent home at 42 Mūkusalas Street – the Mūkusala Art Salon.

A private institution does not have to represent the entire course of Latvian art history. This allows the salon’s curators to be subjective while furthering the scientific study of the collection.

Works in the Zuzāns Collection are ever more frequently loaned to museums in Riga and other regions in Latvia.

Art goes online

August 2010

Art and culture portal Arterritory.com is launched. Dina and Jānis Zuzāns are among its owners and major supporters.

The portal regularly publishes the magazine Arterritory Conversations with Collectors in Latvian and English, featuring conversations about art with the world’s leading art collectors.

Acquisition of the cork factory

August 2016

The Zuzāns family acquires the historic Cork Factory with the aim of establishing a private art centre of international importance.

Zaigas Gailes Birojs is entrusted with the reconstruction of the building that will become Zuzeum.

The core of Zuzeum will be the Zuzāns Collection and the collection's current home, the Mūkusala Art Salon — in a new guise and under a different name.

The big Zuzāns collection exhibition

July 2017

The biggest Zuzāns Collection exhibition to date, TOP in formation, opens at the Latvian National Museum of Art. The model of the forthcoming Zuzeum is put on display for the first time.

First exhibition opens at zuzeum

October 2017

Zuzeum is already happening. Its first exhibition opens in the historic building – Dreams and Dramas, an exhibition of contemporary art from Israel.

Expansion of the Zuzeum garden

March 2018

Following the expansion of the Zuzeum garden towards Satekles Street, the ensemble becomes a finished whole at the intersection of two thoroughfares.

Zuzeum 101

April 2018

Youth programme Zuzeum 101 is launched.

The first edition of the programme, titled How to Write a Painting, takes place in collaboration with the editors of the bilingual bookazine Benji Knewman.

During the course, young adults get to know the Zuzāns Collection, visit current exhibitions and evaluate their content and appearance, meet curators and exhibition designers, and together with the editors of Benji Knewman, try their hand at making their own printed magazine.

The Riga international biennial of contemporary art begins

June 2018

Zuzeum becomes one of the venues of the Riga International Biennial of Contemporary Art.

The inaugural biennial runs from 2 June to 28 October and features the works of more than 100 artists from Latvia and abroad.

Zuzeum : The Ear

October 2018

Whilst Zuzeum building is getting ready for transformations, Zuzeum : The Ear is already happening. 

Zuzeum : The Ear is a curated shop-movie place with a rooftop terrace. It is also the meeting point for the youth program Zuzeum 101.

In collaboration with bookazine Benji Knewman and film project Spektrs, the space hosts film nights and other activities for the broader public, which will grow in regularity and scale after Zuzeum’s reconstruction is completed. 

First work in the collection
Founding of the purvītis prize
Salon on Mūkusalas street
Art goes online
Acquisition of the cork factory
The big Zuzāns collection exhibition
First exhibition opens at zuzeum
Expansion of the Zuzeum garden
Zuzeum 101
The Riga international biennial of contemporary art begins
Zuzeum : The Ear