Kiev, Ukraine National Art Museum of Ukraine


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The National Art Museum of Ukraine (Ukrainian: Національний Художній Музей України) is a museum dedicated to Ukrainian art in Kiev, Ukraine.


It is located in a building that was constructed in 1898 by architect Władysław Horodecki for the Kiev City Museum. It was in fact a remake of the talented Moscow architect Petr Boitsov who failed to receive a government license. The building was originally designed as a museum for the local society of patrons of arts and antique lovers. The facade of the building conveys a neoclassical architecture form - precise reproduction of a six-column porch of Doric order with entablature, triglyphs, metopes and frieze decoration depicting the Triumph of Arts. The architectural composition featuring figures of gryphons and large concrete lions at the top of the stairs were created by an Italian sculptor, Emilio Sala. On the construction of the building was expended 249,000 rubles with only 100,000 paid by the government of Russian Empire. Another 108,000 rubles were paid by the Tereshchenko family who also created the Museum of Western and Oriental Art in Kiev. At first, at the first floor was located exhibition of the Russian archeologist Vikentiy Khvoyka who moved to Kiev from the Kingdom of Bohemia. The museum officially opened just before Christmas on 23 December 1904 as the Kiev Industrial Arts and Science museum of Emperor Nicholas II. The first director of museum became Mykola Biliashivsky.
In 1936 the museum became known as the Kiev State Museum of Ukrainian Arts and in 1964 as the State Museum of Decorative Arts of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic.


The competitive project presented by the Museum of Antiquities and Arts. The main facade, 1898

from Wikipedia by V. Horodets’kyi, P. Boitsov Public domain

Originally called the Kiev City Museum of Antiques and Art, the founders set out to put together a collection of pieces representative of Ukrainian fine art. Ranging from medieval icons to portraits of military and church leaders during Cossack times, some depicting caricatures of Mamay. Present time famous artist works included those of Taras Shevchenko, Ilya Yefimovich Repin, Vladimir Borovikovsky, Vasily Andreevich Tropinin, Mykola Pimonenko, Mikhail Vrubel, Nikolai Ge, Serhiy Svetoslavsky, and Oleksandr Murashko among many others.
After World War I, the museum also served as the Museum of History. One of its most memorable expositions displayed an old trophy tank, which was lent by the Triple Entente to the White Army.
After World War II the museum changed its name and its focus back to art. The collection began to grow, with Ukrainian art coming from all areas of Ukraine, and from places like Galicia. The directors obtained Ukrainian art from Moscow and St. Petersburg, as well as from Ukrainian artists living abroad in Europe and America. However, during Joseph Stalin's repression, this activity ceased, and a large part of the collection was dispersed and hidden.
After Ukrainian independence, the museum reached the status of a major international institution. For the first time, its collections traveled outside of the country and were exhibited in The Netherlands, Canada, France, Denmark, and Croatia.

Current exhibition

Today, the museum continues to expand its collection. Some new additions include a unique icon relief of St. George and works by the international Kiev born pioneer of Geometric abstract art Kazimir Malevich.
The current exhibition includes over 20 thousand pieces. Among many are works by a now world-renowned constructivist Vasiliy Yermilov, and Cubo-Futurist Alexander Bogomazov. The Ukrainian side is represented by works of famous Ukrainian and Russian artists such as David Burliuk, Aleksandra Ekster, Vadim Meller, Kliment Red'ko, Solomon Nikritin, Victor Palmov, Maria Sinyakova, Mikhail Boichuk, Mykola Pymonenko, Ilya Shtilman and many others.
On 26 April 2014, Art retrieved from the ex-president Victor Yanukovich's home is being exhibited at the museum.


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  • +380 44 278 1357
  • [email protected]
  • Hrushevskoho st. 6
  • Su, We-Th 10:00-17:00; Fr 12:00-19:00; Sa 11:00-18:00

National Art Museum of Ukraine