Somov and Braikevich met on the eve of the First World War. As you can see, the personal qualities of Mikhail Vasilyevich largely determined the nature of his meeting. Somov worked slowly, and many of his works were promised in advance to collectors. Braikevich's ardent desire to get as many Som works as possible forced the artist to extract from folders graphics of different years - sketches, sketches, sketches, preparatory sheets. Although more valuable compared to them are considered to be finished paintings and fully completed drawings, the works on paper can introduce into Somov's studio, mostly graphics: to explain the creative idea, to show the architectonics of artistic thinking. When Braikevich and Somov came closer, the collector was allowed to work with the artist to order.
In early April 1919, due to the Red Army's approach, Odesa's evacuation was announced, and Mikhail Braikevich and his family left the city. However, before that, he managed to transfer his art collection to Novorossiysk University. Soviet rule lasted for several months - in August, Odesa was occupied by the Volunteer Army led by Lieutenant General Anton Ivanovich Denikin.
Shortly afterward, the first exhibition of Braikevich's collection opened. It was organized by Professor Nikolai Lvovich Okunev, who fled from the Bolsheviks to Odesa from Petrograd. The artist Philip Goziason wrote about that exhibition in the "Odesa Leaf": Thus, at the height of the Civil War, Odesa managed to acquire a real cultural gem: a small, but treasured and necessary museum of Russian painting - paintings by Rokotov, Repin, Serov, Vrubel, Somov, Bakst, Benoit, Lancer… Congratulations from the bottom of our hearts, our city, poor in artistic values, hungry for real art".