The Omsk Museum of Fine Arts.

The Omsk Museum of Fine Arts, one of the largest in Siberia, was founded in December 1924. Now its collections numbering over 15 thousand include the works of Russian and foreign painting , drawings and engravings, sculpture and applied art. The basis of the collection was laid in 1920s with the works transferred to the art department of the West-Siberian Territory Museum in Omsk in the 1920s from the State museum fund . The exibits were received from Moskow and Leningrad from the closed Rumyantsev Museum and the Museum of the Academy of Arts, from the well-known private collections of A.V.Kasyanov, I.S.Isajanov, M.P.Ryabushinsky, I.E.Tshetkov, F.F.Yusupov and others.

The exposition of the art department was housed on the first floor of the former palace of the governor-general of West-Siberia. Now the museum occupies the whole premises.

Among the first works were the canvases which now are the pride of the museumís collection - the landscapes by A.Bogolyubov, I.Levitan, I.Shishkin, K.Korovin, the studies by V.D.Polenov.Later the collection was enriched with the works by Venetsianov, I. Aivazovsky, I. Kramskoi, I.Repin, M.Vrubel, V.Serov.

 Ivan Shishkin. Old Lime-trees. 1894

In 1932 the museum was replenished with the collection of works of the educational museum of the Vrubel Institute of Arts and Industry. This collection included pictures by local artists, canvases by Russian and foreign masters, the unique works of decorative and applied arts of Russia , Europe and the Orient.Among them there are 8 canvases by A.Yavlensky whose works are rare in Russian museums.

A number of interesting works came in from the State Tretyakov Gallery in the 1930s-1940s, among them V.Surikovís "Head of a Monk", A.Exterís "Paris at the Ball", N.Goncharovaís "Harvest", M.Larionovís "Circus Dancer".

In 1940 the art department was transformed into the independent museum - the Omsk Museum of Fine Arts.

In the following years the museum was supplemented with the works by R.Falk, M.Voloshin, L.Bruni, Z.Serebryakova, N.Voitinskaya, A.Osmerkin. The collection of icon-painting grew considerably, now it includes the icons of the 18th-early 20th centuries painted by the masters of Russia, Siberia and the Urals.

The academic art of the second half of the 19th- early 20th centuries is vividly exemplified by the canvases by I.Keler, K.Makovsky, S.Bakalovich, G.Semiradsky, P.Svedomsky, M.Botkin.

Amply represented in the collection is the work by Peredvizhniky (members of the Society for Travelling Art Exhibitions)- G.Myasoedov, V.Makovsky, N.Nevrev, N.Yaroshenko. The best part of the collection of Peredvizhniky is their landscape painting. The canvases by I.Shishkin, F.Vasilyev, A.Bogolyubov, V.Polenov, N.Dubovskoi, I.Levitan belong to the firstrate works of the Russian landscape painting.

The painting and drawings of the turn of the century make up a rather comprehensive and rich section of the collection. An important place in it is occupied by the works by I.Repin, M.Vrubel, K.Korovin.

Nikolai Roerich. Boats.
From the series "The town is built". 1903

The museum is a proud possessor of some works by M.A.Vrubel who was born in Omsk. Those are decorative panneaux-plafonds intended for the decoration of one of the rich mansions in Moskow.

The Omsk collection of the European painting is not large, numberibng about 300 works by the famous and by not very famous artists of Italy, Spain, Holland, Flanders, France, Germany, Switzerland. By full right it may be considered one of the best in Siberia. The names of the former owners of the canvases were well known in Russia - the Gorchakovs, the Vorontsov-Dashkovs, the Shuvalovs, the Stroganovs, the Benkendorfs, the Saksen-Altenburgskys, Faberge. 16 paintings came to Omsk from the collections of the Yusupovs, among them the portrait of Catherine II by I.-B.Lampi, two works by J. B. Greuze - "Girl with a Tomato" and "Day-dreamer", twin compositions by the German artist Angelica Kauffmann "The Allegory of Virtue" and "The Allegory of Justice", a winter landscape by the Dutch painter Andreas Schelfhout "View of Dortre four miles from Rotterdam", "The Ships and the Commodity Exchange" by the German painter J.P. Hachert and others.

The painting "Christ visited by King Abgarís messngers " by Alessandro Tiarini regarded to be lost until now came from the famous E.B.Shuvalovaís collection. "Madonna with a Child" by Simon Vouet, a French painter of the 17th century, belonged to the Benkendorfs.

Many interesting names of European masters were discovered in the Omsk collection, among them Michele de Bouillonís still life "Vanitas" from the collection of the prince K.A.Gorchakov, Pieter de Grebberís "Womanís Head" (Holland) from the collection of E.G.Saksen-Altenburgsky.

The ancient family of the Princes Dolgorukys were the owners of the panels of an altar - "Saint Agnes" and "Saint Cecilia" -an example of the Renaissance painting of the early 16th century.

Melchior de Hondecoeterís "Poultry-yard", characteristic of the late Dutch still life of the 17th century came to the Omsk museum from the collection of S.A.Polovtseva.

Recently a few works were acquired in Omsk- "Still Life with Nautilus" by Erich Bruno (Germany) and two paintings by a Flemish master Balthazar van der Bossche "In the Painterís Studio" and "In the Sculptorís Studio". The works by Bossche are rare in Russian museums.

In 1985 the museum purchased three paintings from the moskow collector S.P.Sidorov, among them Fantin-Latourís "Chrisantemums".