National Museum of Kazakhstan Celebrates 10th Anniversary with Vibrant Exhibition

ASTANA – A new exhibition offering a true visual feast opened at the National Museum of Kazakhstan on April 5, celebrating the museum’s 10th anniversary. The exhibition will remain open until July 31.

The exhibition features 50 artists showcasing 250 works. Photo credit:

Over the decade, the National Museum has accumulated a wealth of paintings and other art objects reflecting the rich Kazakh art history over the period of a century.

From Soviet-era artists to their contemporary fellows, the exhibition titled Paintings of the Steppe: Symbols, Colors, Images adopted a diverse approach. It features renowned names such as Abilkhan Kasteev, Aubakir Ismailov, Ural Tansykbayev, Aisha Galimbaeva and Gulfairus Ismailova – a total of 50 artists showcasing 250 works.

There are artists from the Soviet-era to their contemporary fellows. Photo credit:

“I have been studying and loving our Kazakh art all my life, and I have been doing research professionally for 27 years. Therefore, every painting that will be on display today, every artist, every author is very dear to me,” said the exhibition curator Olga Baturina.

The team has been working on the exhibition since September. 

“At first it was a systematic work of selecting paintings from the museum’s fund. When we collected all the works and saw their diversity and breadth, we had to reduce their number further. This is the most difficult thing – selection, because it is impossible to discard anything. Each painting is a masterpiece. But when we finally collected everything, that’s when these seven themes emerged,” she said.

“Aura of Tenderness” by Kamil Mullashev is the centerpiece of the exhibition. Photo credit:

The concept of the exhibition implies thematic zoning into seven spaces, including historical subjects in Kazakh painting, images of nature – richness and diversity of landscape motifs, women artists, family, spring, love and contemporary art – new names.

“The first section is called Spirit of Ancestors and Music of the Steppe. Along with paintings, it contains large tapestries, felt carpets and even national instruments,” said Baturina.

“This first section sets the rhythm for the whole exhibition mirroring the unhurried pace of the Kazakh steppe’s kui (musical composition),” she added.

“Aura of Tenderness” by Kamil Mullashev is the centerpiece of the opening celebrations at the National Museum. “It is a painting about harmony, the harmony of the man with himself and nature,” said Baturina.

“In general, since the exhibition is festive and dedicated to the anniversary, we chose the most joyful images and warm, atmospheric paintings, which give strength, optimism, hope and faith to a person attending,” she added.

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