About

During the half Century-long Soviet occupation of Latvia (1940-1990), many Latvian artists continued to create while exiled abroad. The mission of the Global Center for Latvian Art (Pasaules latviešu mākslas centrs – PLMC) is to recover this work – as well as contemporary Latvian art produced abroad – and transport this artwork to Latvia where it can be preserved and exhibited. PLMC was established as a Latvian foundation (nodibinājums) in 2011 by its predecessor organization, The Global Society for Latvian Art (Pasaules latviešu mākslas savienība – PLMS) which is a United States 501c3 nonprofit, founded in 2004 in the state of Illinois. The center is the only institution specifically tasked with preserving Latvian art created outside the country for the public to research and enjoy. 

The center is located in beautiful Cēsis, a medieval city nestled in the middle of the Gauja River National Forest, 85 km from Rīga. The city is home to a range of cultural institutions including the Vidzeme concert hall, the Cēsis city gallery, one of the best preserved medieval castle complexes in Europe as well as many galleries, shops and restaurants.

PLMC opened its first gallery in Cēsis in 2014. Over €150,000 was contributed by many individual and organizational donors in order to transform a part of the former Cēsis vocational school into an exhibition space. Named the Ripa Gallery in honor of the major donors, Jānis Ripa and his sisters, a beautiful modern exhibition hall was created in the school’s athletic department, located directly across the street from Cēsis’s 800-year-old St. John’s church in the old town section of the city. A few years later, a second gallery was created in an adjoining space and named the Sipoliņa gallery in honor of a major donation made by Anda Sīpoliņa, daughter of noted Latvian diaspora collector Leopolds Sipoliņš.

PLMC has developed an archive and study center, where its collection of Latvian diaspora art is housed. The collection, presently numbering over 1,200 works, is being digitized and soon will be available to visiting art scholars and the general public. PLMC’s collection of letters, books, posters and other informational materials about Latvian diaspora art is growing as well.

In addition to new exhibits each year at the center in Cēsis, PLMC brings traveling shows to other museums and exhibition venues throughout Latvia. The Center also hosts a number of related events, such as theater performances, concerts, lectures, artist residencies and activities for children.

PLMC is deeply grateful to the City of Cēsis for its significant support of this project and to all the organizations and individual donors who have contributed to make this the largest Latvian diaspora art center in the world. We appreciate your continued support.

PLMC board:

Lelde Kalmīte – founder & curator

Dainis Mjartāns – co-founder

Guna Mundheim

Anda Sīpoliņa

PLMC staff:

Executive Director: Kārlis Kanderovskis

Gallery Manager: Baiba Eglīte

Collections: Rita Šmagre-Žigure

Volunteer: Ingrīda Bite

THANK YOU!

PLMC is grateful for major capital campaign support from individual donors:

Ripa family: Jānis Ripa, Aija Horton, Ruta Weber

Robert & Guna Mundheim

Gerda Roze

Juris & Māra Ubāns

John J. Medveckis

Anda K. Sīpoliņa

Vilnis un Mudīte Strazdinš

PLMC is grateful for the support of the following organizations:

Global Society for Latvian Art

Anšlāvs Eglītis and Veronika Janelsiņa Foundation

Klāvs Sīploliņs Foundation

Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Latvia

American Latvian Artist’s Association

American Latvian Association Cultural Foundation

Australian Latvian Artist’s Association

Cēsis City Council

Cēsis Bureau of Culture and Tourism

Cēsis Museum of History and Art

Special Assignments Ministry for Social Integration Affairs (Latvia)

Latvian National Association of Canada

Latvian Association of Australia and New Zealand

Latvian Cultural Association BRIDGE

United Latvian Organizations of Minnesota

Latvian Artist’s Union LATVIS (Canada)

New York Artist’s Group

World Association of Free Latvians Cultural Foundation

Valmiera Museum

Latvian National Cultural Capital Foundation Vidzeme Program