The Sofia Arsenal – Museum of Contemporary Art first opened its doors in 2011. By 2017, it has almost a hundred events on its calendar. In 2015 and 2016, new initiatives were introduced. ‘Space–Audience’ features spatial visualizations related to the museum architecture, its history, change, and visitors. Since the 1990s, ‘Autobiography’ has been developing the documentation of contemporary art. ‘Theatre at the Museum’ encourages the development of performances and infuses new ideas, meanings, and life into the exhibition rooms.
The Sofia Arsenal historical complex includes the museum building, which is an immovable architectural cultural item of local importance. It was initially utilized for the manufacturing and storage of artillery ammunition when it was built in 1916. It served as the headquarters of the Military School for Reserve Officers from the 1930s until the conclusion of WWII. It was given to the newly founded National Gallery for Decorative Applied Arts from the early 1970s through 2003.
The first part of its rehabilitation, the installation of an exhibition space on the first floor, was funded by the European Economic Area’s Financial Mechanism (2009–2014), to the design of the Kadinov Brothers Architectural Agency.
The next step entails finishing the second and mansard floors, as well as establishing a repository and a separate building for temporary expositions.