The Museum of Fine Arts was opened for public in 1931. The Museum’s specific and exceptionally valuable collection holds over 5200 works and spans a timeline from the 14th century to the contemporary art production. Besides the Croatian artists, the Museum’s collection holds artworks from Yugoslavia, Italy, Germany, Austria, France, and Czech Republic. This diversity has influenced the Collection’s exhibition concept in nearly 400 works of art exhibited in the space of 2200 m2. The selection reflects the entire collection, its stylistic, thematic and media diversity, covering a time span of nearly seven hundred years. Thus, the exhibition is an opportunity for unique time travel, a space where you can experience the incomparable adventure of art.
The exhibition begins at the first floor with the works by old masters (1400 – 1900) and continues with anthological works of the great masters of Croatian Modernism (1900 – 1950). The second half of the 20th century is represented with masterpieces of High Modernism (1950 – 1970), among which Croatia’s internationally famous abstract art production.
The ground floor display presents Croatia’s and local contemporary art practices (1960 – present), reflecting its multidisciplinary and multimedia diversity, as well as especially strong media art production.
The Museum of Fine Arts is situated in a building built in 1792 as the first municipal hospital, after design by the constructor Petar Kurir. Present Neo-Renaissance exterior is the result of the extension in 1872, after design by architect Josip Slade, when the south wing and the central atrium with porch were added. During late 1970s the building was adapted into the Museum of the Peoples Revolution designed by architect Vuko Bombardelli. The museum was closed in 1991. Since 1996 the building has hosted the Museum of Fine Arts and Multimedia Culture Centre. From 2004 until 2009, adaptation, reconstruction and extension of the Old Hospital was designed by architect Vinko Peračić, after the museological program and concept by than-director Božo Majstorović. In spite of the numerous alterations, the building is a valuable example of the 19th century architecture and it plays important part in the historic memory of the city as its first hospital. The future extension or the third phase of the Museum of Fine Arts is planned for the Baroque bastion Cornaro on the north side of the building, and will include storage, temporary exhibitions gallery and multimedia rooms.