Velenje, Velenje Castle
Today, you can see eleven museum and gallery collections at the Velenje Museum. Besides being a museum, the Velenje Castle provides a place for many different social and cultural events.
Velenje, the 5th biggest town in Slovenia, is the administrative, political, economic and cultural center of the Šaleška Valley. Above all, people link this town with the Gorenje Company and the Velenje Coalmine. With its products, Gorenje is present on all continents and the coalmine is one of Europe’s most modern mines of such kind. However, the industry has not been the town’s only identifying characteristic for a while now, since Velenje blossomed into a town with modern architecture, parks and sport courts, plenty of green surfaces and culture.
The cultural buzz is generated by the Velenje Festival, the Velenje Library, the Velenje Music School, the Velenje Gallery, the Velenje Youth Center, various culture clubs and others. Of course we cannot forget to mention two very important museums - the Velenje Museum and the Coal Mining Museum of Slovenia.
Velenje has a modernistic ground plan (designed by an architect called Trenza) which differs from town squares of Staro Velenje and other Slovene towns. Velenje began to develop more intensely at the end of the 19th and at the beginning of the 20th century when they opened a coal mine between Stara vas and Škale which also brought about a rapid development of the industry. It peaked and stayed strong after 1969 when the production of kitchen appliances by Gorenje moved to Velenje. Still today, Gorenje is an industrial giant providing the highest number of jobs in the region.
The Velenje Museum
Special exhibitions: A collection of African art collected by František Foit is the only collection of its kind in Slovenia.
When the new town was built in Velenje, the authorities decided to build a museum to preserve the town's cultural heritage. The museum was located in the Velenje castle which was, as a result of war, in pretty dire state. The first exhibition arranged in the museum was the Collection from Slovene coal mines, which was opened to the public in 1966.