The 125+ year-old Caetani Centre is a 6,000 sq. ft. designated heritage house, situated on 1.3 acres of land on lower East Hill in Vernon, BC. The facility is operated by the Caetani Cultural Centre Society as a registered not-for-profit organization and registered charitable organization. The house and grounds are owned by the City of Vernon, and operated by the Caetani Cultural Centre Society.
Now open to the public, the Caetani Centre is available for both guided and self-guided heritage tours. Visitors can learn about the fascinating Caetani history and story and see treasured family artifacts as well as Sveva Caetani’s heralded Recapitulation painting series, recently returned permanently to the Caetani Centre after 35 years from the Alberta Foundation for the Arts.
The Caetani Centre is also host to special festivals and events such as the lively Summer Music Festival and the not-to-be-missed “fun”raiser The Caetani Splash, usually held in late-June, as well as numerous other events such as our ever popular Halloween ghost tours and more.
The house is the former home of renowned artist, writer, mentor and teacher Sveva Caetani. Sveva was locally known as ‘the Countess’ due to her aristocratic background and she was a visionary figure in the community with a deep belief in culture, knowledge and artistic endeavours.
The mysterious and heartbreaking story behind the history of the house and its inhabitants provides a gateway to understanding our recent past, opening a window to a much different world and shedding light on the many artworks and writings created by our benefactor Sveva Caetani. Following the death of her father in 1935 she was kept a virtual prisoner in her own home for 25 years by her invalid mother. Her story is one of overcoming adversity and rising above her circumstances. Sveva left her 1.3 acres of gardens and historic home to the community of Greater Vernon in 1994 with the express wish that it serve as a community cultural facility for artistic and critical exploration.
Sveva’s vision for her home has become reality and is now being carried out through creative and thought-provoking programming. The Caetani Centre also provides a venue for visual artists from around Canada and the world to explore a diverse range of arts practices, theories and experiences through our Self-Directed Residency Program for visual artists, writers, curators, and creative individuals.
The Caetani Centre provides quality arts facilities that allow artists and writers to experiment, develop new ideas and interact with fellow artists and the community.