Kamil Valiakhmedovich Mullashev

From 1963 to 1967 he was a student at the Alma-Ata Art College named after N.V. Gogol.
From 1972 to 1978 - student of the painting department of the Moscow State Art Institute named after VI Surikov.
Since 1974 - the participant of many foreign, all-Union, republican exhibitions.
1984 - Laureate of the Academy of Fine Arts of France
Honored Worker of the Republic of Kazakhstan
People's Artist of the Republic of Tatarstan
Laureate of the State Prize of the Republic of Tatarstan G.Tukaya
Laureate of the State Prize of the Republic of Kazakhstan
Honorary member of the Academy of Arts of Kazakhstan, Russia, China.
Laureate of the Academy of Fine Arts of France
The owner of the order "Parasat" Republic of Kazakhstan.
Holder of the Order "Duslyk" Republic of Tatarstan

China, Kazakhstan and Russia in the life and work of the Kazakh painter Kamil Mullasheva

Head of the department "Fine Arts of Kazakhstan" of the State Museum of Arts of the Republic of Kazakhstan. A. Kasteeva, President of the National Section of AICA (Almaty, Kazakhstan)

“Art is the highest manifestation of power in man,” Leo Tolstoy accurately noted. Kamil Mullashev has demonstrated the power of art to the fullest in his works and creative achievements. Currently, Kamil Mullashev is an Honored Art Worker of the Republic of Kazakhstan and a People's Artist of Tatarstan, a laureate of the State Prizes of Kazakhstan and Tatarstan, a professor at the Kazakh National University of Arts, an honorary academician of the Russian Academy of Arts, an honorary professor at the Khan Shan Pedagogical Institute and the Shan Tao University (PRC) . The list of awards and honorary titles of the artist testifies to the recognition of his merits by three countries: the Republic of Kazakhstan, the Russian Federation and the People's Republic of China. Consider their role and significance in the life and work of the artist.
Kamil Mullashev's work reflects not only his attitude, but also his difficult life path. On his life and creative path, the artist overcame many obstacles, and his talent, hard work, dedication and the right choice of life priorities allowed him to achieve a high professional level and recognition from art lovers and fellow artists.

Kamil was born on October 27, 1944 in China, in the city of Urumqi - the capital of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, known as East Turkestan - into a Tatar family. Kamil's parents were from East Kazakhstan (the city of Semipalatinsk), and they met and got married in China. Kamil's father, fleeing repression in the Soviet Union, moved to China in 1928, while Kamil's mother's family moved to China during the great famine in Kazakhstan in 1931-1933. They had three sons, Camille was the youngest.
Father - Valiakhmed Mukhamadyar - taught Arabic in Semipalatinsk and was a teacher of writing and calligraphy at a school at the mosque. In Urumqi, my father worked as a calligrapher in a publishing house and at the same time as an artist in the Soviet consulate. There is no doubt that the father's profession kindled an interest in art in his son. From early childhood, Camille showed exceptional drawing skills. As a teenager, at the age of fourteen, Camille painted an oil portrait of his father, in which he managed to accurately create the psychological image of an elderly person. The portrait of the Father strikes with a strong and confident manner of drawing for a fourteen-year-old boy. Kamil's mother taught at a women's gymnasium and taught illiterate women for free in her spare time, for which the PRC government awarded her orders three times. In addition, she was elected a people's qadi - a judge who helps in resolving various kinds of disputes and everyday situations. For five years, from 1955 to 1960, she was a member of the National People's Congress. There are many printed documents about Kamil's mother in the Historical Museum of Urumqi. Camille is very proud that his family was highly respected in society.
In the 1950s, during which Kamil's studies at school fell, relations between the Soviet Union and China were good neighborly and friendly.

Father's pant 1958 oil on canvas 38.5x49

Mullashev family 1962 On a bike Camille

According to his recollections, Soviet films were shown in the cinemas of Urumqi, Soviet newspapers and magazines were sold in kiosks, including those in Kazakh and Uighur. The future artist was especially interested in the Moscow illustrated magazine Ogonyok: he was very fond of colorful color reproductions of paintings in the magazine, although at that time he could not read Russian.
According to the artist, his interest in drawing was greatly developed by his parents. “At home we had a library, there were paper, brushes, that is, there were all the conditions for creativity. For as long as I can remember, I have always been drawing,” says Kamil. Therefore, in 1961, after graduating from school, Mullashev decided to enter the oil painting department of the Xinjiang Institute of Arts, where at that time highly professional artists who studied abroad in their youth studied in France and Italy taught. In China, they were called "bourgeois renegades" and from 1959 were sent into exile in Xinjiang. Thus, Kamil was fortunate enough to be trained in the art of watercolor by the artist-teacher Yang Ming Xiang (better known by the Russian surname Vasin), an artist of world importance, who later lived in Australia. The institute also taught such masters as Li Shu Wu, as well as Gazy Amat, one of the most famous artists of the realistic school, later the Minister of Culture of Xinjiang. According to Kamil, in one year he mastered an incredible amount, especially in the field of portraiture. He mainly learned to work with oil paints and was oriented towards Soviet, Russian and Western European realistic art.
However, the relatively measured student life soon ended. After Stalin's personality cult was exposed, China's policy towards the Soviet Union began to change dramatically, and in the early 1960s, relations between the two countries were on the verge of breaking. The Mullashev family was on the run again. In April 1963, they, like many other families, returned to the Soviet Union, first to Semipalatinsk, and then to Karaganda, to the Path to Communism collective farm. And only after some time they managed to move to the Alma-Ata region, to the village of Uzyn-Agash.
In Kazakhstan, the attitude towards immigrants from China at that time was wary, if not biased. It was forbidden to settle in the cities, since the Mullashev family did not have documents. Without documents, they were accepted only to collective farms. Therefore, Kamil's career path in the Soviet Union began there. He began to work as an assistant to a shepherd, repaired sheep yards, hauled hay on a tractor, that is, he learned all the hardships of hard rural labor. At the same time, he contemplated and stored in his memory the colors and landscapes of the Kazakh steppes and rural life. Years later, Camille recalls this period in his life without regret: "It was an amazing time: I accumulated life experience for the future." As soon as the possibility of obtaining further education appeared, Mullashev turned to the collective farm management for help. But as a good worker, the authorities did not want to let him leave the collective farm. However, after much persuasion, he hardly managed to get the necessary certificate, with which he went to enter the Alma-Ata Art School named after N.V. Gogol.
Thus began another - Alma-Ata - period in the life and creative development of Kamil Mullashev. He had to start a lot anew, face one obstacle after another along the way, and perceive reality as it really was: harsh and often unfair. One of the biggest obstacles at this stage was the lack of knowledge of the Russian language. Despite the fact that Kamil was fluent in Tatar, Uighur, Kazakh and Chinese, he did not know Russian at that time. When submitting documents to the school, his drawings and watercolors were so surprising that no one believed in his authorship and his documents were not accepted. Kamil, not having knowledge of the Russian language, could not understand what they wanted from him, and could not explain that these were his own works.
However, Mullashev was not going to give up and the next year he went to school with his father, who could speak Russian fluently. He again presented his work, but the teachers, remembering his last year's visit, began to assert again that he brought other people's work. Fortunately, the director of the school, Akrap Kudaibergenovich Zhubanov, intervened and offered Kamil to complete the task in their presence. The result was stunning. Two years of study at the Xinjiang Institute of Arts were not in vain: Kamil was far ahead of the students of the school with his professional training. Finally, he was accepted into the school, which he completed in three years instead of five.
The theater and scenery department, where Kamil studied, was considered the strongest at that time: such artists as Akrap Zhubanov, Duisen Suleev, Vladimir Semizorov taught there , Igor Korogodin. Meanwhile, ignorance of the Russian language, as well as literature and history, still remained a problem for him. He immediately began to solve this problem, diligently engaging in self-education, which became his life habit. After graduating from college in 1967, Kamil Mullashev worked for two years as a theater designer at the Russian Theater in Tselingrad (now Nur-Sultan), and then for several years as an artist at the Oner (Art) publishing house in Almaty.

Nevertheless, his dream was to continue his art education in Moscow. Moscow in Soviet times was not only the capital of a huge state, but also the epicenter of culture and the best place for higher education. In 1972, this dream came true: Kamil entered the faculty of painting at the Moscow State Art Institute named after V. I. Surikov. This period of his life can be called "Russian". Mullashev comprehended not only the secrets of professional artistic skill, but also Russian artistic culture and history. He was always open to acquiring new knowledge. At the Moscow Institute, Kamil studied in the workshop of Professor Tahir Salakhov, a well-known Soviet artist, one of the founders of the “severe style” art in Soviet painting, a laureate of state prizes. The artist recalls these years with gratitude, first of all, to his teachers, who gave students the opportunity to show their creative individuality and encouraged their own positions. The institute enriched the novice painter with professional skills and extensive knowledge. Determining, of course, was the influence of Professor Salakhov on the young artist.

The painter Kamil Mullashev was formed precisely in the 70s, when, according to critics, in the fine arts, along with “great restraint, concentration, unhurried thoughtfulness, "artists expressed" and their publicism, and their types of expression, and their concepts of drama and pathos ". In this "polyphony of moods, experiences, states" Camille found his "niche". The ideas and images of his works were associated with the artistic processes of the time, and the laconism of form inherent in the artist’s painting, the restraint of figurative intonation, the author’s ability to combine reality with a romantic feeling were preserved in the future as a feature of his style. The graphic style and “rational attitude” to color that prevailed in those years were also reflected in Mullashev’s art.
His creative individuality first clearly manifested itself in the painting "Morning" (1976, State Tretyakov Gallery), in which the author managed to sharply and boldly compare the eternal and the modern , free flight of white horses across the ancient steppe and a parachute with a space capsule in the vast sky. In the picture, the organic unity of the momentary nature of what is happening and the eternity of life is striking. The sculpturally clear image of objects and the predominant blue, blue, white tones form a refined whole. A strong, direct feeling is balanced by the general laconicism and lyricism of the image.
Fame came to Mullashev immediately, one might say overnight. His graduation work is the triptych “Earth and Time. Kazakhstan ”(1978, State Tretyakov Gallery) - was a huge success. After exhibiting at the republican and all-Union exhibitions, the triptych was acquired by the State Tretyakov Gallery. The painting has been reproduced many times. The artist succinctly and meaningfully embodied the image of the republic, denoting three main components in it: virgin lands, oil and space. In the central part of the triptych, in the painting "Youth", the images of the sky, the earth and the astronaut coexist in an inseparable unity, and each reinforces the significance of the others. In an effort to convey the essence of the phenomenon, the artist, as it were, freed the image from secondary details, transforming its materiality into the conventionality of poetic similitudes. The composition of the left part - "Above the White Desert" - is dominated by spherical volumes of oil tanks. In the foreground, next to these colossal structures, you can see the figure of a man on a camel - a kind of coexistence of the past and the present and their comparison. Here, according to the exact definition of the art critic A. Yakimovich, the artist was carried away by the “romantic pathos of contrast”.

In the work of artists of the 1970s and early 1980s, the poetization of industrial motifs became a natural phenomenon. The art critic A. Kamensky, noting the “beneficial desire” of artists to “somehow modify the “technized” vision of modernity, find a poetic key, a human approach to it,” called this kind of acceptance and reconciliation with technization in art “documentary romanticism” . By combining these two words, the critic managed to express the main essence of the “new artistic trend in Soviet painting”, which combined the works of M. Ombysh-Kuznetsov “Mastering” (1980), Y. Kryzhevsky “A Day Ascending Tomorrow” (1981) and other works related with the idea of ​​mastering vast spaces. Triptych “Earth and Time. Kazakhstan" by Kamil Mullashev, created in 1978, was the first in this series. In 1984, he was exhibited at an exhibition of 100 works of Soviet art in the halls of the famous Parisian Grand Palais, where he was awarded the silver medal of the French Academy of Arts.
These years were very fruitful for Mullashev. He gained wide popularity, regularly participated in all-Union and foreign exhibitions, was awarded diplomas and distinctions from the Academy of Arts and the Union of Artists of the USSR. The career of the artist was steadily moving forward.
In 1984, in the direction of the Union of Artists, Kamil went on a creative trip to Syria and Afghanistan, where he created many works in the so-called hot spots that have not been lost its relevance even today. These works reflect the artist's impressions, convincing with their concreteness and authenticity. At the heart of the depiction of picturesque images of Afghanistan in the artist's canvases is a kind of monumentalization based on clear color and linear-spatial rhythms of the composition, the interaction of constructive volumes and a mean, almost monochrome color scheme.
The pictorial and plastic system of Mullashev's works began to noticeably change in the mid-1980s - early 1990s. At this critical stage in the development of public self-awareness, the artist was no longer interested in big social topics - instead of them, new ideas appeared, the style of paintings changed. Mullashev's plastic and coloristic searches were henceforth connected with the latest historical and artistic trends of the century. The new social situation removed the barriers that separated the avant-garde movement from creative practice. “The avant-garde alternative has become a real problem for a wide range of artists and for the viewer,” noted critic Alexander Morozov, referring to this “alternative” as “the third way,” “this is the perspective of art that declares its independence from other areas of social practice, from the generally accepted , the traditional hierarchy of the material and spiritual values ​​of life ".
The artist was looking for new plots and means of depiction, and even became interested in "playing naive". Having completely surrendered to “free writing” (as the author called the color, filled with decorativeness, sonority and brilliance of the palette), Camille created such paintings as Milking the Mares (1989), By the Stream (1993), Birth of a Genius (1993), "Kiss of the Striped" (1995) and others, in which the picturesque element dominated. He freed himself from the need to recreate the illusion of three-dimensional space on the canvas, he was carried away by pastosity, textured elaboration of the canvas.

In 1992 Mullashev took part in the TATART exhibition held in St. Petersburg and Kazan. The artist always maintained a close relationship with the Tatar people, with their culture, willingly visited Tatarstan and, based on impressions from trips to Kazan, created a series of works “Tatar Women”, marked by a surprisingly precise ratio of pictorial concreteness and expressive conventionality. Realizing new plastic ideas in the paintings "Bridesmaids" (1996), "Sabantuy" (1996), "Girl's Conversation" (1996), the author sang the ideal of female beauty through national images. "Tatar Women" is one of the most poetic series in the artist's work, distinguished by sincerity and tenderness in the depiction of female images. Thus, with his work, Kamil Mullashev paid tribute to the Tatar culture and his parental roots.
As a great artist, he always felt at ease in the Kazakh national spiritual tradition, embodying it in his own way in the painting “Aura of Tenderness” (2000, National Museum of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Nur-Sultan). It fully reflected the national worldview of the image of the Kazakh woman. According to the artist, the nobility of women's faces, the richness and splendor of national clothes - everything as a whole should affirm the enduring value of national life.
Mullashev's work is characterized by the versatility of images, the fascination with mythical and historical characters, the natural world and the eternal theme of motherhood. Work in the portrait genre has always been an important component of the artist's work. It is no coincidence that he created a significant number of portrait images: both ordinary and famous people of culture, literature, science, public figures and historical figures.
Starting to create the image of Abylai Khan (2009), the author was aware of the historical significance and scale of the outstanding statesman's personality. Abylai Khan (1711–1781), Khan of the Kazakh Khanate, was a smart politician and diplomat, a talented commander. The purpose of his life was to strengthen the state and unite all three zhuzes of the Kazakh Khanate. The decisiveness and inflexibility of the military leader, who makes the only right decision, was conveyed by the artist in the portrait of Abylai Khan. His gaze is focused and, as it were, directed deep into himself. The play of light and shadow and subdued coloring, emphasizing the white spot of the headdress, enhance the drama and grandeur of the image of the commander.

The portrait of the national Tatar poet Gabdulla Tukay (1886–1913) is painted with special penetration. The main thing in his image was not a portrait resemblance, but the state of the poet's soul. With a special force of pictorial skill, a landscape was drawn out, designed to reveal the complex inner life of the poet, wholly immersed in his thoughts. It is no coincidence that the author depicted him in the evening, when the sun goes below the horizon, and the approach of darkness creates a sense of drama and tension, coinciding with his image.
In portraits, whether they are images of historical figures of past eras or contemporaries, such as the first President of the Republic of Kazakhstan N. A. Nazarbayev or the President of the Republic of Tatarstan M. Sh. Shaimiev, Mullashev never portrays the momentary state of mind of the model. All of them are in a state of inner concentration, they behave with dignity, showing the ability to control themselves. In their views you can see the mind and great life experience.
In one of his self-portraits (2013), painted for the anniversary exhibition held in Kazan in 2014, Mullashev appears as a mature artist. Camille created a deep and truthful image of his creative personality, imbued with a sense of a slight sense of sadness and wisdom generated by the understanding of life that comes with age.
The logical result of Kamil Mullashev's active creative activity was the award of the title of "Honored Worker of the Republic of Kazakhstan" in 1996 and the title of "People's Artist of the Republic of Tatarstan" in 2003 year.

The artist travels a lot around the world and often visits his homeland, China, where he participates in exhibitions, holds his own personalities, master classes, collecting this is a large audience. In 2012, for holding a personal exhibition dedicated to the 20th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the Republic of Kazakhstan and the PRC, he was awarded a diploma of the Government of the PRC, and in 2013 he was elected a member of the Academy of Arts of the Chinese National Academy of Fine Arts of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region of the PRC.

In the work of artists of the 1970s and early 1980s, the poetization of industrial motifs became a natural phenomenon. The art critic A. Kamensky, noting the “beneficial desire” of artists to “somehow modify the “technized” vision of modernity, find a poetic key, a human approach to it,” called this kind of acceptance and reconciliation with technization in art “documentary romanticism” . By combining these two words, the critic managed to express the main essence of the “new artistic trend in Soviet painting”, which combined the works of M. Ombysh-Kuznetsov “Mastering” (1980), Y. Kryzhevsky “A Day Ascending Tomorrow” (1981) and other works related with the idea of ​​mastering vast spaces. Triptych “Earth and Time. Kazakhstan" by Kamil Mullashev, created in 1978, was the first in this series. In 1984, he was exhibited at an exhibition of 100 works of Soviet art in the halls of the famous Parisian Grand Palais, where he was awarded the silver medal of the French Academy of Arts.
2016 was a very important year in Kamil Mullashev's career. The artist was awarded the highest award - the title of laureate of the State Prize of the Republic of Kazakhstan - which was personally presented to him by the First President of the Republic N.A. Nazarbayev. And on the eve of Mullashev was elected an honorary academician of the Russian Academy of Arts in Moscow, where his teacher, Professor T. T. Salakhov, was present. A little earlier, in September, he participated in the large-scale international exhibition "The Art of the Silk Road", organized in China as part of the International Cultural Forum in Donghuang (PRC), presenting landscapes and images of the inhabitants of Kazakhstan.
S 2007 goda Kamil Mullashev zhivet v Astane, nyne Nur-Sultan, v tsentre kulʹturnykh i obshchestvennykh sobytiy. Yemu nravit·sya sovremennyy dukh novoy stolitsy respubliki, yeye kulʹturnaya sreda. Deyatelʹnaya natura khudozhnika nakhodit v kazhdom mgnovenii zhizni radostʹ bytiya. Ogromnoye trudolyubiye i vysokaya trebovatelʹnostʹ k sebe ostayut·sya glavnymi sostavlyayushchimi yego tvorcheskoy deyatelʹnosti.
Udelyaya bolʹshoye vnimaniye plen·eru, Kamilʹ kazhdoye leto vyyezzhayet na etyudy v kazakhskuyu stepʹ. V posledniye gody on lyubit pisatʹ naturnyye peyzazhi Charyna, Kegenya, Dzharkenta, Taldy-Kurgana. «Tishina, rovnaya stepʹ – kak budto ty odin na zemle. Khorosho pishet·sya: gde khotel, tam ostanavlivalsya i pisal», – rasskazyvayet khudozhnik o svoikh poyezdkakh. Nesluchayno imenno «dykhaniyem stepi» napolneny yego peyzazhi. Netoroplivyy ritm ikh prostranstva napolnyayet polotna osobym mirooshchushcheniyem. Yesli v stepnykh peyzazhakh prostranstvo vsegda otkryto i plasticheski yasno, to v lesnykh peyzazhakh Tatarstana ono zamknuto vysokimi derevʹyami, zakryvayushchimi gorizont i svoimi verkhushkami ukhodyashchimi za kray ramy. Naturnyye vpechatleniya podskazyvayut khudozhniku kompozitsionnoye postroyeniye poloten. A v Armenii Kamilʹ pisal peyzazhi sarʹyanovskikh mest. Eti shtudii slovno pozvolyali yemu priblizitʹsya k razgadke vliyaniya prirody na iskusstvo togo ili inogo zhivopistsa.
Mnogoletnyaya i plodotvornaya tvorcheskaya zhiznʹ Kamilya Mullasheva otmechena yego vnutrenney tselʹnostʹyu. Khudozhnik vsegda ostavalsya vernym sebe i vysokim printsipam iskusstva. V yego tvorchestve nashlo otrazheniye po forme iskusstva organichnoye sochetaniye realisticheskogo i avangardnogo, obobshchenno-simvolicheskiye i metaforicheski-ironichnyye proizvedeniya. Garmoniya, yasnostʹ i uravnoveshennostʹ, prisushchiye Kamilyu Mullashevu kak cheloveku, otlichayut i yego tvorchestvo.

Since 2007, Kamil Mullashev has been living in Astana, now Nur-Sultan, at the center of cultural and social events. He likes the modern spirit of the new capital of the republic, its cultural environment. The active nature of the artist finds the joy of being in every moment of life. Huge hard work and high demands on himself remain the main components of his creative activity.
Paying great attention to plein air, every summer Kamil travels to study in the Kazakh steppe. In recent years, he likes to paint natural landscapes of Charyn, Kegen, Dzharkent, Taldy-Kurgan. “Silence, flat steppe - as if you are alone on earth. He writes well: where he wanted, he stopped there and wrote, ”the artist says about his trips. It is no coincidence that his landscapes are filled with the “breath of the steppe”. The unhurried rhythm of their space fills the canvases with a special attitude. If in the steppe landscapes the space is always open and plastically clear, then in the forest landscapes of Tatarstan it is enclosed by tall trees that cover the horizon and their tops go beyond the edge of the frame. Field impressions prompt the artist the compositional construction of canvases. And in Armenia, Kamil painted landscapes of Saryanovsk places. These studies seemed to allow him to get closer to unraveling the influence of nature on the art of this or that painter.
Kamil Mullashev's long and fruitful creative life is marked by his inner integrity. The artist has always remained true to himself and to the high principles of art. In his work, an organic combination of realistic and avant-garde, generalized symbolic and metaphorically ironic works was reflected in the form of art. Harmony, clarity and balance, inherent in Kamil Mullashev as a person, distinguish his work.


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