A nation is known, recognized and distinguished among the world nations by certain characteristic features. The highest and the greatest of these features is culture.

HEYDAR ALIYEV
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Seven Beauties exhibition in St. Petersburg

The State Russian Museum, Marble Palace, St Petersburg welcomes all-comers to the exhibition Seven Beauties, dedicated to the 880th anniversary of the outstanding Azerbaijani poet and philosopher Nizami Ganjavi. 

Polad Bulbuloglu, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Azerbaijan to Russian Federation, Anar Alakbarov, Assistant to President of the Republic of Azerbaijan and Executive Director of Heydar Aliyev Foundation, and Grigory Goldovksy, Deputy Director for Scientific Work at the State Russian Museum delivered speeches at the opening ceremony. Dr Shirin Melikova, Director of the Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum provided a curatorial tour for the guests.

The exposition presents a synthesis of carpet, jewelry art, artistic metalwork, miniature, contemporary art, theatrical and decorative art, spoken word poetry, classical music, and dance, uniting several historical eras.

Nizami’s poetry has inspired the work of many masters for centuries. The ballet Seven Beauties by the outstanding Azerbaijani composer Gara Garayev is one of the remarkable works that has become classics. The ballet was written based on one of the poems of the famous Khamsa. It was first shown on the stage of the Azerbaijan State Opera and Ballet Theater in 1952.

Literary, musical, and choreographic sources create a special environment within the exhibition space to demonstrate valuable exhibits of arts and crafts.

The exhibition welcomes the viewer with the installation Miniature by the well-known Azerbaijani conceptual artist Rashad Alakbarov created by the shadow painting method based on the 16th-century Tabriz miniature Young Reader.
The project’s concept embraces the unity of perception of visual and sound images. Video installations take the viewer to the poem through the main storyline. Miniature characters from the old handwritten books illustrated in the videos come to life and invite visitors to travel to their enchanted world. Walking through this revived medieval book, among the luxurious decoration of the palace premises, the viewer finds himself in the space of a ballet surrounded by dancing ballerinas, arising from the vast expanses of the Universe like mirages.

The exhibition displays a short film, the international project of spoken word poetry Nizami: Word of Mouth organized by the Heydar Aliyev Foundation and the ICOM Azerbaijan National Committee. More than 150 famous people – art and culture figures from Azerbaijan, Russia, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan – recite here fragments from Nizami Ganjavi’s Seven Beauties poem.

The exposition represents exhibits from the collections of the Heydar Aliyev Foundation, the Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum, and the State Museum of Musical Culture of Azerbaijan.

Organizers: Heydar Aliyev Foundation, Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan in the Russian Federation, and the Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum.

Exhibition runs until May 9, 2022. 

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