Mykola Oleksandrovych Yaroshenko (1846-1898) was a portrait and genre painter who also made many drawings. He was one of the leading painters of what became known as Russian Realism at the end of the 19th century, and his paintings often depict hardships of life in the Russian Empire. In 1876, he became one of the leading members of a group of Russian painters called the Peredvizhniki (Wanderers). He chose a career as a military officer and studied at the Cadet Academy in Poltava. He died of tuberculosis in the Caucasus region of Russia, and his widow bequeathed their art collection to the Poltava municipal art gallery in 1917. It consists of over 100 paintings and 23 sketch books, and forms the basis of the Poltava Art Museum, which exists today.