The Museum of Romanian Peasant is the winner of the
European Museum of the Year Award for year 1996. A short visit to the museum will convince you that the award is
well deserved. The collection includes 18000 pieces of pottery and 20000 examples of national dress from all over
the country, as well as carpets, icons, furniture, photographs and films documenting the customs of rural life. But
what makes it special is the way the collection is arranged; the museum looks more like an art gallery than a museum.
The display information is hand written on pieces of paper or illustrated by freehand sketches. In one of the galleries
you can see a wooden church and in another a wooden peasant house. They also have some beautiful "troite" (crosses
placed at crossroads or at the edge of a village).
The museum building has an interesting story as well. The museum
was founded in 1905 under the name of Ethnographical and National Art Museum. In 1906 Carol I laid the foundation for
the present building; the construction was stopped in 1916 and restarted in 1932. It was completed only in 1935, 29
years after it was started. The red-brick building is an illustration of the neo-Romanian style ispired from the
traditional architecture. In 1953, the communists "liberated" the building and sent the collection away to another
location. The building was turned into a museum dedicated to the history of the Communist Party. In 1990 the museum
returned to its old location. Address: Kiseleff 3