ART GALLERY DECHKO UZUNOV
In 1984, the Capital City Municipality completed a project involving the construction of Dechko Uzunov’s studio. The two-story building features an exhibition hall at the lower level and an artist’s studio at the upper one which offers a glimpse of the artist’s work environment. The two-story building was utilized by the artist both as a workspace and an exhibition venue until his death in 1986. Based on Dechko Uzunov’s last will and testament, his legacy shall be preserved in the shape of a national museum collection and be housed in the gallery space of the same building.
The artist’s final wish was granted in 1995 when his nephews, Atanas Neykov-Nayo, Hristo Neykov and Penyo Valchnov, and his niece, Elena Valchanova, donated a valuable collection of 13,000 artworks to the Municipality. Just a year later, the Dechko Uzunov Gallery-Museum was opened at 24 Dragan Tsankov Blvd. in the capital city as an annex to the Sofia City Art Gallery.
It took several years for the museum to establish itself as an institution in its own right, which became directly accountable to the Culture and Spiritual Welfare Directorate of the Capital City Municipal Administration in 1999.
In 2001, the gallery-museum was transformed into the Municipal Cultural Institute, and in November of the same year it started functioning as an institution in its own right. Various activities and events took place in the gallery, namely exhibitions presenting a wide variety of genres, themes and styles exemplified by works of Dechko Uzunov’s contemporaries and prominent Bulgarian artists. The venue also hosted various discussions and lectures about the great Bulgarian artist’s life and career.
In November 2016, the Dechko Uzunov Gallery-Museum was re-transformed into an annex of the Sofia City Art Gallery. Together with another annex, namely the Vaska Emanoilova Gallery, the venue is now functioning as a museum that collects, studies, exhibits and works with the artistic output of prominent Bulgarian artists. Dechko Uzunov and his art are still both an inspiration and a challenge for researchers, while the gallery space is a venue for various art events and initiatives enabling dialogue between different generations.