Russians stole 80% of paintings from the Kherson museum. The occupiers were assisted by specialists from Crimea

Kostia Andreikovets, Ghanna Mamonova

The Russian occupiers took 80% of the paintings from the Kherson Art Museum named after Oleksiy Shevkunenko to Crimea. They stole the most valuable: paintings by Western artists, Ukrainian and Russian 18th-19th century, Soviet times. But they left the paintings of modern artists, so there is an idea to transform the museum into a gallery of modern art.

The director of the museum Alina Dotsenko told "Babel" about this.

According to her, the occupiers were unable to take away one large portrait of Lenin, of unknown authorship. Due to its size, the Russians could not carry the painting through the corridor.



The museum was looted from October 31 to November 4. About 70 people loaded paintings into trucks, which, as they filled up, left Kherson. The group of people who looted the museum consisted of porters and FSB employees. According to the custodian of the museumʼs funds Hanna Skrypka there were ten people among the Russians who could be employees of Crimean museums. These people lived in the museum during the removal of the exposition, gave recommendations on how to pack works of art, and also selected paintings.

As "Babel" managed to establish, the museumʼs collection was taken to the Simferopol Museum of Local Lore. One of the residents of Simferopol gave "Babel" photos of trucks with paintings being unloaded near the museum. At the request of Babel, the employees of the Kherson Regional Art Museum recognized the work from their museum in the paintings.