History collection is counting the early 1870s, when a young lawyer and ardent lover of art Bogdan took Khanenko marriage to Barbara Tereschenko family of prominent philanthropists and patrons.
From Bogdan memories:
"It is not only the prosperity of a public institution, but its very existence, as well as the life of every creature in our world is unthinkable without love, without that love which binds, gives strength and faith in the work and ensure its success."
The key person to this art collection - Varvara Nykolivna, was born on 9 August 1852 in the town of Glukhov, the eldest daughter of Nykola Artemiyovych Tereshchenko (1819-1903), a well- known sugar factory owner, Ukrainian philanthropist, and connoisseur of the arts. Devoted to the national culture, he funded the erection of St. Volodymyr Cathedral in Kyiv, the Kyiv Municipal Museum, as well as structures at the Kyiv Polytechnical Institute. In addition during his lifetime, her father donated more than three million rubles toward the construction of hospitals, asylums, schools, and churches. In 1899, the Kyiv City Council "Duma" renamed Oleksiyivska St. to Tereshchenkivska in his honor.
Nykolivna perpetuated Varvara as its family's passion for art as wel tradition of philanthropy. Over the years she shared in her husband's passion for collecting, and turned her energies toward the creation of the present collection. In ndebted to Varvara particular, We are o for the addition of the icon Khanenk collection, the Majolica pottery, and the porcelain. She also gave considerable attention to artifacts of Ukrainian folk art. With a view toward the support and encouragement of handicrafts, she opened trade school on her estate in the village of Olenivka, in the Vasylkiv district (or povit) of the wider Kyiv region (or guberniya) In keeping with Bohdan Ivanovych's March 1917 Will, his wife was to complete their work, and prepare the private Tereshchenkivska mansion for conversion into a public museum of world art. Following the death of her husband, and despite the privations of the ongoing Civil War, Varvara spent her remaining funds to secure and heat the mansion, all the while continuing to acquire new exhibits for the collection. Despite the emigration of nearly her entire family, Varvara Khanenko steadfastly refused every proposal to emigrate and remove the exhibitions Professor S.A Giliarov wrote of her: "She would not leave Kyiv: the museum was dearer to her than life." On 15 December 1918, concerned with the collection's safety, Varvara Nykoliv na signed a Deed of Gift transferring the ownership of the manse and collection to the Ukrainian Academy of Sciences. Due to events during those turbulent years, it was only in early 1921 that the Academy officially approved the Deed. In 1921-1922 Varvara Khanenko served as a member of the Committee of The B.I. and V.N. Khanenko Art. Museum at the Ukrainian Academy of Sciences (as the museum was known through December of 1923) Despite her unstinting cultural altruism, she suffered from relentless harassment at the hands of the Bolshevik authorities. Until her final days, she dedicated herself to the collection, occupying only a small room on the second floor mezzanine.
The most important single augmentation of the Khanenko collection is undoubtedly res that of the collection of Vasiliy Aleksandrovich ca Shchavinsky (1868-1924), made up principally of paintings and engravings by the Dutch and de Flemish masters. Shchavinsky had left his to artwork to The Khanenko Museum in his will k and accordingly, in 1925-26, transferred it from The Hermitage in St. Petersburg (then Leningrad), where the collector had entrusted the collection for safekeeping during that troublesome period of social uprising. In many ways, the Museum's destiny readily reflects events in the nation's history. Thus, at the beginning of the 1930s, the exhibition was reorganized to comply with the political necessity of "revealing the class nature of art Compelled to use the rhetoric at play in that era to "direct one's efforts toward the organization of proletarian consciousness", the Museum staff labored to engineer descriptions of the rooms and their contents in an appropriately propagandistic tone, designating each exhibit with fitting "social and economic characteristics". During that period of Ukrainian history, this offered a singular opportunity to illustrate "class-alien artwork". Brilliant art scholars, led by Professor S.A. Giliarov, consciously participated in this ruse, in order to be able to proceed with their important work: the renovation of exhibitions, and the restoration, study, and preservation of the priceless works in the collection.
Source: Khanenko museum website and articles and visuals from museum tour written by Olena Zhivkova translated by Illya Rakos