Biography - Abdurefi Abiev



  1. About artist

About artist

Abdurefi Abiev is a painter and graphic artist.

He was born in the village of Chokurcha, Simferopol district, on May 30, 1879.

The future artist studied at Simferopol Crimean Tatar teacher’s school. The boy's talent attracted the attention of the Crimean Tatar patron of the arts - Colonel Izmail Muftiy-zade, who financed Abdurefi Abiev’s study in Moscow, at Stroganov Central School of Technical Drawing. After graduating from Stroganov school in 1906, he received a qualification as an applied artist. He studied together with famous Crimean Tatar artist Usein Bodaninsky.

In 1906 Abdurefi Abiev was arrested and sentenced to hard labor, but thanks to Prince Stroganov’s intervention, hard labor was replaced with deportation to France.

From March 1907 to March 1909, the artist studied at the Académie Julian in Paris.

In 1908 he attended the Anglo-French colonial exhibition in London.

In 1909 Abdurefi Abiev returned to the Russian Empire and became a head of the carpentry and model workshops, a teacher of drawing and drafting at a mechanical-technical and vocational school in Rostov-na-Donu. He drew sketches of furniture for a furniture factory. He also participated in the restoration of the wall painting of St Basil’s Cathedral in Moscow.

In 1917 the artist returned to Crimea. He taught graphics at Simferopol commercial school. In the same year, Abdurefi Abiev headed the Bakhchisarai department of the Petrograd Society for the Protection and Preservation of Monuments of Art and Antiquity in Russia.

In November 1917, he became the director of the art school "Uner Sanai" in Bakhchisarai.

From 1921 to 1923, he was a member of the Presidium and executive secretary of the Bakhchisarai regional executive committee.

In 1928, during a campaign against nationalism, Abiev was removed from his post and brought to trial for financing the stay of three students in Moscow for the money of the school.

In 1929 he was exiled to Chardzhou of the Turkmen SSR. He taught drawing and drafting at Pedagogical College named after Ablaev.

In 1930 the artist returned to Crimea, where he taught drawing and drafting at Crimean work faculty named after Nazukin in Simferopol.

From 1934 to 1935, he worked at a secondary exemplary school in Evpatoria. In 1936 he taught at the 6th and 46th junior secondary schools in Simferopol.

Since 1936, Abdurefi Abiev worked as a teacher of drawing at the Crimean art school named after Samokish.

In 1938, at the height of the repressions against representatives of the Crimean Tatar intelligentsia, the artist was arrested and shot.

Like the entire Crimean Tatar people, his wife Yekaterina Maleeva, along with her children, was deported from Crimea in 1944.

In a foreign land, she created a mini-museum of her husband's works.

A small number of Abdurefi Abiev’s works have survived. During his lifetime, the artist participated in republican exhibitions. Currently, the works are kept in private collections and in the Crimean Tatar Museum of Cultural and Historical Heritage, where his exhibition was held in 2019.

Abdurefi Abiev was known as a painter, colorist and portraitist.

Artist works