Photography Museum is a specialized museum of photography art, one and only in Lithuania. It is an important multifunctional center, which preserves and represents significant collection of 150 000 objects, an important part of Lithuanian visual heritage: photographs, technology and equipment of photography, collection of prints and documents, other objects. In 2014th, modernized museum started to organize photography exhibitions of contemporary and historical Lithuania, as well as foreign exhibitions. Meetings with authors and researchers of photography art and other innovative educational and recreational activities are organized. By the agreement of three parties in 2014th, Lithuanian Ministry of Culture, Šiauliai Aušros Museum and Tatjana-Luckienė-Aldag, in Photography Museum Vitas Luckus photography Center was established. In the Center research on art of Lithuanian Photography of the second half of 20th century is made. Research on works of artists of the time and one of the most conceptual representatives of his time, Vitas Luckus are made. In Photography Museum, the collection is preserved, recognition of the center is being built.


Photography Museum was established on 25th of May, 1973, when in Šiauliai Aušros Museum of History and Ethnography (now called Šiauliai Aušros Museum) a small exhibition under the auspices of Lithuanian SSR (Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republic) Photography Art Society was opened. They were given two chamber-type halls temporarily for the exhibition. A young photojournalist Antanas Dilys together with other artists materialized the idea of Photography Museum. Back then, there were no such specialized museums of photography in the whole Soviet Union, and there were only about 30 of them in the whole World.

Soon enough, in 1976, Antanas Dilys together with other artists, have found the permanent place for Museum of Photography in the heart of Šiauliai old town, Vilniaus street, in the second floor of a building, which was built during the interwar period. In the same year, the Photography Museum was linked to Aušros Museum and it has become a branch of one of the largest museums in Lithuania. Shortly the first long-term display was opened in the new premises. They started to organize exhibitions, competitions of photography between Republics of the Soviet Union. The first festival of photography art was organized. Training sessions of photography was being organized, seminars, conferences; the Museum had become a very important center of photography art and heritage.

The first significant sign of development appeared in 1983, when the third floor of the building had been passed to Museum, all Museum had been reorganized. In 1990 new display of Lithuanian photography history had been installed, Space for changing exhibitions had been organized. During the reconstruction (from 2009 till 2014) of Museum, premises were being expanded and modernized and today the Museum holds an entire four-store building in the city center.

Photography Museum Today

The architecture of reconstructed museum and esthetics of interior emphasizes the historical architectural identity of the interwar period, reflects the function of the building by replicating symbols and codes of photography. Original and open space of the museum encourages informal communication, educational and creative activities.

The museum’s permanent exhibition “Freedom for Photography!” invites you on a journey through time from the beginning of photography to the present day.

In the gallery of the museum one exhibition changes another. Exhibitions are accompanied by various events, tours, educational workshops. It is a lively space of creative experiments, an educational study and a photo laboratory with a small exhibition hall. Everybody is welcome to creative workshops: children, youth, adults and seniors. Here exhibitions, lectures, film previews are held. In the reading room, named after the founder of the museum A. Dilys, any visitor can skim through specialized publications of photography. While enjoying an exhibition, you may have a rest and grab a cup of coffee as it is served here, free wi-fi is also available. Newest albums of photography, journals and other publications can be found in a small museum shop which is nearby.

A special opportunity for an unforgettable experience: you can literally get inside the camera, just visit the roof terrace and find camera obscura. On the terrace, find the scopes and have a glimpse at panorama of Šiauliai old town, compare it to spectacular views of the modern city of Šiauliai. During evenings and holidays, visitors are welcome to enjoy concerts and other entertainment events on the roof terrace.

Every year, the museum holds a tradition to organize events inside the museum, such as Museum Night and Researchers’ Night, also celebrations such as Šiauliai days and nights. The entrance to the museum is free during important Lithuanian national holidays.

You are also welcome to discover archived documents in virtual space too. A significant collection of more than 20 000 objects of photography heritage are published in national and international databases.

Photography Museum today is open and available for everybody.


Photography Museum offers scanning and photography services of exhibits. Here you may get exhibits digitized in the format of digital images for non-commercial use or for commercial publishing and other commercial purposes.