This sacred art museum, one of the most important in Galicia, occupies some of the chambers of the Saint Clare convent in Monforte de Lemos. The convent was founded in 1622 by Catarina de la Cerda y Sandoval, wife to Pedro Fernández de Castro, VII Count of Lemos. Catarina was ordained in this convent once she was widowed; This patronage is of vital importance, given that the collection houses part of the great artistic legacy from both of these nobles. The legacy includes magnificent paintings, sculptures, ivories, textiles and sumptuary objects (especially reliquaries). All these pieces were gathered by the Counts of Lemos during their viceroyalty in Naples from 1610 to 1616.
The exhibition hosts the most important collection in Galicia of Italian art from the first third of the 17th century. The collection is developed in five halls which show magnificent paintings, sculptures, ivories, textiles and sumptuary objects (especially lockets) collected by the Counts of Lemos during their viceroyalty in Naples and other important pieces purchased in Spain. Some of the most important works are the sculptures from the workshop of Gregorio Fernández, exponent of the Castilian School of 17th century, including the Lying Christ in processional urn and two Immaculate virgins. It is worth mentioning the Italian Renaissance goldsmithing pieces from the 17th century, along with the reliquaries of the Italian and Castilian schools or the silk embroideries in the liturgical ornaments and clothing and in the images' garments - most probably proceeding from a monks' workshop of the 17th century.