Elbay Rzakuliyev

(1926 – 2007)

Elbay Rzakuliyev is a famous Azerbaijan artist. He was born in Baku in 1926. The first art education he received in Art College named after Azim Azimzadeh in Baku. He graduated this college in 1944. He was a member of The Artist Union of USSR. From 1953s he worked on sceene and cinema painting. From 1964 he is a Honoured Worker of Fine Art of azerbaijan Rebublic and from 1977 –National Artist of Azerbaijan Republic. In 1977 he became the member and soon the Secretary of the Artists Union of Azerbaijan.
In 1998 Elbay Rzakuliyev was awarded by order of Glory.
Hi died in 2007.

More Artworks by this Artist are available in Gallery.


Elbey Rzaguliyev’s versatile talent ensured his success and recognition both in fine arts and cinema where he got involved at the age of 11. After realizing that love for painting and cinematographic embodiment attract him equally, Elbey graduated from the art school named after A.Azimzade in Baku and entered the faculty of production designer of the Cinematography Institute in Moscow

The originality of his plastic language stands out for its insistence, temperament, an almost monumentality of forms and strong touch, forming the pastous facture of the canvas, as if getting flashed with the strength of the emitted power of color. He painted workers, builders, oilmen against the backdrop of an industrial landscape, as if extracting a fragment out of a long tape about the work of a Soviet man-a constructor of a young country. In his portraits of oilmen, in his picture ‘Friends’ or ‘Family’, ‘On the height’ and others, the painter endows his characters with excessive monumentality. His builders and workers and women and men are self-monuments that fulfill their mission confidently.  In the genre paintings taken from the top in the ‘Revolutionary Baku’ series, including ‘In the village’ or ‘At the oilfield’, the painter uncovers the idea of the painting in a generalized and comprehensive way, attaching an extreme importance and significance to all events by using the methods of representation, and skipping details.

His series of paintings devoted to Mexico is one of the most popular in Elbey’s creative activity. He was impressed with this country – the homeland of Jose Clemente Orosco and Diego Rivero, familiarization with David Elfaro Sikeiros. His coloration acquires the highest stage of emotionality, burning flamboyant Mexicans under the Mexican sun in ascetic landscapes and images. Another series is about Japan, in which the painter refers to the style of Japanese engraving.

Elbey Rzaguliyev uncovered his talent even more comprehensively in cinema. He managed to create a surprizingly harmonic environment for the characters of such films as “Mother-in-law”, “His big heart’, ‘A hello-girl’, ‘Arshin mal alan’, ‘Sevil’, ‘Last night of the childhood’.