Latif Karimov - Soviet Period

Soviet Period

Latif Karimov settled in his native Shusha and married Shovkat, a young local carpet-weaver. He was appointed import instructor to a carpet factory. In addition, he founded and conducted courses in carpet weaving introducing Iranian techniques that were not known to the Karabakh weavers. For students who were illiterate and could not take notes, he composed goshmas (Azeri poetic genre) to get them to remember weaving procedures. He later set up similar courses in Quba and Baku.

In addition to carpets, Karimov successfully designed jewellery, wood carvings, china and fabric patterns, and decorated the interior of buildings. In 1937, he was hired to design the Azeri hall of the All-Union Agricultural Exhibition together with Rustam Mustafayev. In the 1940s while he was decorating the interior of the Nizami Museum, the Great Patriotic War broke out, and Karimov was hired as to the Azerbaijan State Radio as an Iranian news edition broadcaster.

In 1945 he was appointed head of the Department of Fine Arts at the National Academy of Sciences of Azerbaijan Institute of the Arts. Between 1947 and 1977 he compiled the Dictionary of Oriental Music. In 1950 he received the Stalin Prize, the highest ranking award in the Soviet Union. In 1954 he organised his first personal exhibition which featured carpets, architectural ornaments, wood carvings, china vases, jewellery, graphic items, etc. Between 1961 and 1983 he published a three-volume book on the history, development and structure of over 1300 Azeri carpet pattern elements. His efforts and enthusiasm led to the establishment of the Azerbaijan Carpet Museum in 1967, first one of this kind in the world.

The Azerbaijan Carpet Museum was named in his honour in 1991.

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