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Poltava Art Museum has a long history. The choice fell on the part of the department of the museum of local lore, where in 1919 the exhibition of paintings was located. In the beginning, there were only 23 working albums of the author and several hundred paintings painted by Yaroshenko. Then the collections of I. Shishkin, V. Makovsky, V. Polenov, I. Repin, V. Maximov and many other artists were added.
Soon in the Poltava region, a committee for the protection of monuments was organized. With the help of the visiting committee, the committee nationalized art values from the estates of Kochubey, Galaganov, Kapnistov, Repnins and other noble estates, which significantly replenished the funds of the art gallery. After increasing the gallery’s stock collections, the question arose of assigning the status of an art museum and moving it to a separate building.
The museum safely moved to the mansion obtained in the property, located on the street of Spasskaya city of Poltava. The building was built in 1912 for the landowner Bolyubash. The famous architect P. Alyoshin “conjured” the construction of a beautiful building. In the history of the museum there were many transformations and ups and downs. In 1934 the museum was liquidated and made it again by the local history department, then in 39 the museum again received the status of an art museum with a prefix of regional significance. At that time, museum funds totaled more than thirty thousand exhibits of great masters of the 17-18th century, the best works of Russian masters of the 19-20th century. This is narrated by the pre-war guide M. Ya. Rudynsky.
Unfortunately, almost all expositions during the war were destroyed and looted. Only those exposures that were evacuated remained intact. So they replenished the museum fund and added more new works of the post-war period. In 1951, the museum continued its activities in the restored building on Spasskaya Street until 2000.
On the eve of the 1100th anniversary of Poltava, the townspeople had a great opportunity to contemplate the modern Art Gallery, designed by architect Yu. P. Oleynik. This building covers an area of more than 2000 square meters, in line with the spirit of modernity. There is a spacious hall, large halls and suites, a wonderful press center for seventy seats, even for lovers of exotic “winter garden”. Since the building of the art museum by that time was very dilapidated and required major repairs, by the decision of the Poltava City Council, the museum moved to Frunze Street to the Art Gallery. Museum expositions were placed on the ground floor in two enfilades, and the museum fund was placed in a special stock vault.
Now in the left half of the enfilade of the gallery are the expositions of Western European works of art: painting, sculptures, decorative plastic and porcelain. The wide assortment includes works by Jan Antonissen van Ravestein, Marcello Bacciarelli, Lucas Cranach the Younger, Francesco Guardi and many other artists.
The right enfilade is filled with the works of Ukrainian artists, there are also works by Russian artists. Wall paintings are harmoniously combined with objects of church utensils and furniture of the 17-18th century. The main highlight was two separate rooms with expositions of the works of the founder of the museum N. Yaroshenko.