Interview with artist Orkhan Mammadov

Orkhan Mammadov is an artist from Azerbaijan. He graduated at the faculty of Decorative and Applied Arts of the University of Art and Culture of Azerbaijan as an artist constructor with distinguished diploma. Between 2000-2002 years he studied at The Art Academy of Azerbaijan and graduated from the academy as an art critic. In 2004 at last he manages to develop up the principles of his own working manner on painting. In his picture, named “Top-to-tail” he manages to create entire tableau by cutting certain fragments of his own canvases and stitching them to each-other logically. Besides oil and canvas, after this artwork threads and ropes becomes the main attributes for Orkhan Mammadov to express his philosophy.

How it began, Mr. Orkhan Mammadov?

“Finding answer to the question “what to do”, is the half of the way!” - These words of the artist whom I met years ago, urged me to ebb to my native village, to buckle down to creative searches right after completing my high education. Having ceased my connections with the other artists, I hoped to fathom into my own world, to feel myself, to discover my attitude to this world.

Why is it important that you discover your own attitude to this world?

- There is a banal saying, that, there is no irreplaceable man in this world. But I believe quite vice-versa - THERE IS NO REPLACEABLE MAN IN THIS WORLD! It is important to discover your attitude with the world in order to find, whether what do you mean to this world and what is your indispensable mission. Otherwise, I couldn’t have worked as myself with no imitation of others in colors, in forms and in philosophy. For several years spending my each day with making sketches, continuously working in plein air, copying classic masters and reading a literature, I came to conclusion that the true art is the reflection of artist’s life on his art! In the other word, sincerity in attitude to your art. So, I tried to scrutinize my life, to discern the main line of it, and finally I found it!

What was that and how did that line reflect in your art?

-The life connected me with certain people, but after a certain period of time, it ceased those connections with them, throwing me into attitude with quite new ones in quite new atmosphere. And after which it did the same thing to me with them too. It horrified me truly, because, an attitude is just like a castle, and you build it in long period of time, putting one brick onto another. But, imagine, something does not let you build this castle of life, making its bricks incoherent. But, one day I really grasped the philosophy of this line of my life, which would be reflected on my art! I understood that, my art must consist of incoherent fragments, which must be connected to each-other afterwards!

Was not that crazy to cut the canvases into the pieces that you drew yourself and put a great labor on each of them?

- The significant thing you want to do, the big sacrifice you must undergo. It demanded a courage to sacrifice my certain canvases to witness the miracle of reincarnation! I decided to do it with my most favorite pieces. Opening five canvases from their stretchers and cutting them into fragments, I began to stitch them back in new order. Having completed my “patchwork” I had to stretch it on a new, bigger stretcher, which thrilled me a lot, thinking whether, would I be successful or destroy everything. Yes, you thing right- I managed to do it! Gazing the miracle from distance for about an hour, I felt that I must say my last words with cords of different sizes on it. I named that first experimental work of mine, “Top to tail”.

What could you extract from this first lucky experiment of you?

- Scrutinizing the first reflection of my life on canvas, I persuaded that it is just me, and it must go on this way! Making such “patchworks” one after another, filled my heart with credence, that someday I will be able to connect those incoherent fragments of my life with the thread of wisdom too!

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