Jak İhmalyan

Who is Jak İhmalyan?

He was born in Istanbul as the second son of his father Garbis from Konya and his mother Verkin from Kayseri. His first relationship with painting began with Abidin Dino in 1936. In 1942, he studied at the Bedri Rahmi workshop of the İDGSA Painting Department. He skipped the first grade at the Academy by passing the exam.

He joined TKP in 1939. He was arrested in 1944 for his underground activities. His detention lasted approximately three years. In 1949, he went to Beirut via Syria without obtaining a passport. He worked as an art teacher in some schools there. At one point, he made a panel on the theme of Friendship of Peoples for Beirut Airport, together with the French painter Simon Baltax.
He moved to Poland in 1956 and worked in the cartoon studio of the Warsaw Radio Committee. He illustrated the Polish translation of Nâzım Hikmet’s book, The Song of Those Who Drink the Sun. Since Jak was a member of the Turkish Communist Party, he was among the close friends of his fellow party member, poet Nazım Hikmet.

He went to China in 1959 and settled in Beijing with his family. He worked at the Radio broadcasting mostly for Turkey, and at the same time he studied the traditional and contemporary picture of the country.

It passed to the Soviet Union in 1961. In 1963, he was appointed as a lecturer in the Department of Turcology at the Institute of Oriental Languages at Moscow State University. Besides teaching Turkish, he also dealt with painting. He had a workshop on Taniyevih Street in the Arbat district. He organized various exhibitions between 1968 and 1978. He became a member of the Union of Soviet Painters in 1974. He died in Moscow on April 1, 1978, and was cremated in Yerevan.
After his death, exhibitions were opened in various countries. A commemorative exhibition was held in Istanbul (Galeri MD) in 1993, on the 15th anniversary of his death. A book containing 13 of his paintings was published by the gallery. Jak İhmalyan's paintings are in many private collections in Turkey, Armenia and France. Some of his works are included in museums such as the Russian State Museum of Eastern Folk Art and the Orhan Kemal Museum. Jak Ihmalyan is the brother of writer Vartan Ihmalyan.

2013 Şişmanoğlu Megaro, Istanbul
1993 Gallery MD, Istanbul
1991 Gallery Marie-Therese Cochin, Paris
1985 Gallery Istasyon Art House, Istanbul
1982 Etchmiadzin Cathedral Museum, Vagharshapat
1980 Ankara
1980 Baku, Tbilisi, Yerevan
1979 Moscow
1979 Ankara
1978 Tartu
1973 Shternberg Institute of Astronomy, Moscow
1972 House Institute of Asian and African Culture, Moscow
1971 Vilnius
1968 Center for Creative Workers, Moscow

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