MELIK AGHAMALOV Born Baku, 1962 Lives and works Baku
Melik Aghamalov graduated from the Azimzadeh State Art College in Baku in 1982 and from the Surikov State Academic Art Institute in Moscow in 1990. Since 1997, Aghamalov has been a member of the Union of Artists of Azerbaijan. Aghamalov uses symbols and signs to tell the story of the origination of the world and forms, their development and interaction, giving the viewer the possibility to enjoy the beauty of the material world while experiencing the spiritual one.
Solo exhibitions 2004 State Museum of Bergkamen, Städtische Galerie ‘Sohle 1’, Bergkamen, Germany Humay Gallery, London Baku Art Centre, Baku Le Bash Gallery, Paris 1991 Baku Art Centre, Baku
Group exhibitions 2010 2009 1999 1992 1990 1989 1988 1987
‘Spring Philosophy’, Museum Art Centre, Baku ‘Black and White’, Museum Art Centre, Baku Exhibition of Azerbaijan Artists, Humay Gallery, London Exhibition organised by Baku Art Centre, ‘Cultural Days of Azerbaijan’, Centre of Shaih Zahid, OPEG Headquarters, Abu Dhabi Exhibition organised by Baku Art Centre, ‘Cultural Days of Azerbaijan’, Carpentras, France ‘Exhibition of Young Artists’, Baku Art Centre, Baku ‘Exhibition of Young Artists’, The Manege Central Exhibition Hall, Moscow ‘Exhibition of Young Artists’, Central House of Artists, Moscow ‘Youth Exhibition’, Krimsky Val, Moscow
Works by the painter Melik Aghamalov, one of the most popular
The Still Life series most vividly characterizes the creative proclivity
makers of contemporary visual art in Azerbaijan, have been shown
of this artist. The characteristic effect of ‘ruined paintings’ – as if
and purchased by museums and collections in Azerbaijan, France,
their stains were a result of layers of time’s fingering – was borrowed
Germany, United Kingdom, Russia and the UAE. His work is marked
by the artist from his impression of Venice. The city floating on water
by a piercing, inimitable individuality.
impressed him so much that it added a new stroke to his artistic repertoire. His love of antiquities is also seen in the friezes that
Painting, aside from the ornamental, rarely exhibits a distinct rhythm,
frame his still life series. Because of this, these works evoke
yet it is present in Aghamalov’s canvases.The artist loves fragmentation,
an association with temple murals and with illustrated manuscripts.
but these fragments, like cells in an organism, are arranged in a strictly
Most of his works are replete with symbolism – for example,
regimented order. There is something of the comic book in this, if only
a triptych that brings together three meaningful and interrelated
one could fit philosophical ruminations and antique mini-remixes into
elements, such as a shell, a skull and a pomegranate. The skull
a comic strip. The recognition of the original painting fragments in the
symbolizes the impermanence of all things. The shell, on the
works of Aghamalov, allows the art critic to label this artist as post-
contrary, is a symbol of eternity. The pomegranate has for millennia
modernist. The recognition of texture also allows the viewer to affix
expressed man’s wish for fertility. Thus, in these three simple
a label of High Art to his work. The recognition of the author’s unique
symbols, the artist expresses the relationship between time and the
manner allows the gallery owner to utter the word “brand”.
continuity of existence.
Exhibition January 17-29, 2012 Location Phillips de Pury & Company Howick Place, London SW1P 1BB