Melkon Kachukhashvili, Alexander Michailov
and Nikoloz Sagaradze

A. Michailov and M. Kachukhashvili were photographers from Kutaisi. In October of 1870 A. Michailov opened the "First Russian Workshop" in Tiflis. In 1874 A. Michailov moved to Kutaisi, married Nino Chiradze, studied Georgian and fell in love with Georgian music and cooking. In 1878 he and M. Kachukhashvili (1841-1922), who at the time moved from Akhaltsikhe to Kutaisi, opened a photo studio in Kutaisi. The number of photos and photo albums that have reached us make clear that they were mostly taking pictures of families, portrait and people of different social strata.

In May 1882 the famous painter Michael Zitchi arrived in Kutaisi from Petersburg. His arrival bucked up the routine and daily life of the city. He was collecting materials to illustrate "The Knight in a Panther's Skin" by Shota Rustaveli. With the support of local intelliectuals and photos taken by A. Michailov and M. Kachukhashvili he managed to create true pictures on the motifs of poem.

Later no, those two photographers started working separately. M. Kachukhashvili died 1922. A. Michailov worked in his studio till he died in 1912. His work was continued by his learner Nicoloz Sagaradze.

Nicoloz Sagaradze was shooting significant cultural events, literary soiree and anniversary celebrations in Kutaisi. In 1934 he moved to Tbilisi.In 1936-1944 he worked in a union "Georgian Photo". Following ten years he spends on sharing his great experience with children in the photo-lab of Palace of Pionners. N. Sagaradze passed gratis to State Cinema-Photo Archive a collection of photos and negatives taken in Kutaisi in the studio of A. Michailov.

Giorgi Gersamia

Masters of Photography

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