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About school of painting of Garabagh



Karabakh is also the cradle of our national culture and arts. Karabakh visual arts formed at the time when the new Karabakh Khanate was established and developed in the 18th-19th centuries, differed for its own style and artistic ways of painting and started to develop in several cities.
The masterpieces created by Karabakh artists in such fields of decorative visual arts as carpet-weaving, jewellery and embroidery still retain their beauty and artistic value. Karabakh carpets and fine jewels which decorate world museums astonish art lovers and those who value true beauty.
Painting is a leading branch of decorative art in Karabagh. Kh. Natavan, N.Navvab etc had exclusive roles in the creation of this painting school

According to available information, Khurshidbanu Natavan Mehdiqulu khan qizi (1832-1897) received her first education and love for arts from her aunt Govhar. It is known that Khurshidbanu Natavan was constantly engaged in painting. Studies show that even when she visited her son Mehdiqulu khan in Tiflis, she spent her free time on the bank of the Kura River and created still pictures of flowers and scenery on location. Her contemporaries highly valued the works of the khan's daughter. 

As a progressive person who sincerely loved her people, Natavan was a poetess who had a special position in the history of Azerbaijani literature and an emotional painter. The "Book of Flowers" written in 1886 and kept at the Institute of Manuscripts of the National Academy of Sciences is the fruit of Khurshidbanu Natavan's strenuous efforts. Along with pictures of flowers, birds and patterns painted by Natavan at various times, her album contains several pictures of scenery.
Natavan gave one of such pieces of embroidery, decorated with beads, to the famous French writer, Alexander Dumas, who visited Baku in 1858. Astonished by the fineness of the handicraft, Dumas called it the "most valuable gift".
Natavan's handicrafts were displayed at exhibitions held in various cities of Russia at the time. Among the works of art displayed at the Caucasus section of the All-Russian Exhibition in 1882, works sewn by the khan's daughter (Natavan) with gold and silver thread on broadcloth drew special attention. They differed for their correct and serious pictures and unity of colours.

Mir Mohsun Navvab (1833-1919) lived and worked in the city of Shusha, which was regarded as the centre of the Karabakh Khanate. According to available information, Shusha was one of the most famous centres of our culture and arts at the time. Prominent poets, music critics, painters, jewellers, craftsmen engaged in artistic embroidery and others lives here, creating high-level pieces of arts. Most of these works now adorn world museums.
One of the most interesting particularities of artists who lived and worked in Shusha was that most of them knew perfectly well not just one type of art, but several of them. The best example of this is Mir Mohsun Navvab.
A prominent 19th century scientist, poet and painter, Navvab created numerous masterpieces that are of special importance in Azerbaijani visual arts.
He drew the wall paintings in his home himself, and after these paintings were restored, Navvab's home museum was established in 1991.
Navvab was an intellectual and artist who had comprehensive knowledge and arts. A calligrapher, painter, poet and music critic, Navvab also drew ornamental wall paintings, provided illustrations for his fine manuscripts and his books printed with a lithographic method at his private printing house and created pictures of flowers and birds and portraits

Scenes of fighting and hunting, fairytales and plants dominate pictures in the houses of Karimbay Mehmandarov, Haji Mammadov, Iskandar Rustamov and Safibayov, which were decorated by Usta Qanbar Qarabagli.
Beginning from the early 20th century, Azerbaijani visual arts entered a totally new stage in its development.
Amir Hajiyev, who worked in the sphere of book graphics for many years, the prominent sculptor Jalal Qaryagdioglu, world famous painter Isa Ibrahimov, Altay Hajiyev, Nadir Abdurrahmanov, Elturan Avalov, Agali Ibrahimov, Elshan Hajizada, Rovshan Bayramov, Zaur Mirzayev, Valeh Mammadov played a special role in Azerbaijani visual arts.

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