ART UNITES #35 summer 2020 text and photos by Pavel Podzorov The modern world is complex and diverse, it is full of opposing trends. Never before our earth has been subjected to such political and physical overloads. Never before has man taken from nature so many resources and never been so vulnerable to the power […]


www.ocamagazine #35 summer 2020 text by Tara Pandeya Dance is an integral part of life in Central Asia; it can be seen both in rural settings and on the proscenium stage, from highly developed virtuosic classical styles to nuanced and subtle folk-dance forms. Western audiences might be surprised to learn that Central Asia has an […]

Projective graphics through the eyes of an art critic

“Imagination is more important than knowledge,” — those words of Einstein might describe Yelena Bezrukova’s approach to art. She herself confesses that she has no professional training in art – she is entirely self-taught. But this has not been an obstacle to her pioneering the concept of projective graphics!  But then the whole idea of […]


“Viking Extraordinaire”, Sölvi Fannar, doesn’t believe in following just one career path, in fact he has actively pursued several. He has acted in films, played music professionally, modelled, been a sports athlete, dabbled in poetry, and even spent time as a health professional. Recently, he is better known for his work in films, especially working […]


Faig Ahmed dismantles and reforms Azerbaijani traditions of carpet making, creating remarkable new works of contemporary art. Through his art practice he reconsiders these ancient crafts and their history by deconstructing both their physical form and their traditions, and questions the conventions associated with their craft by repositioning them in the contemporary art environment. From […]

Original Family Owners to Finally Sell Unique 17-19th Century Turkic Collection

The tradition of private collecting has existed in Russia for centuries. Such donations and gifts helped to create the collections of many university cabinets and museums of the pre-Revolution Russian Empire. For example, the collection of the present-day National Library of the Republic of Tatarstan (Kazan) is based on the collection of Ivan Vtorov, a […]

Kazakh Superstar Brings Sensational Show to London

The London DQ show is part of the Kazakh Culture Days in the UK, hosted by The Ministry of Culture and Sport of the Republic of Kazakhstan and supported by the Embassy of Kazakhstan in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Dimash Quadaibergen is an international, multiple award winning and world-famous Kazakh […]

I see a light for my native cinema at the end of this dark period

INTERVIEW WITH Bolot Shamshiev Few will know much about the cinema in Kyrgyzstan. What currently hampers its development is never aired and never makes the top priority list of state and international organizations. But there is a cinema to note and so Open Central Asia decided to meet one of its prominent players, the People’s […]

Animal Movies and Action Men

Interview with Hollywood Celebrity Monty Cox   Cox is a veteran in the entertainment industry. He is an internationally recognized, award-winning, Exotic Animal Trainer, 2nd Unit Director, Stunt Co-ordinator, Actor and Stuntman. Monty is first ECG member in Hollywod. He grew up in a trailer court in Oakland, California and his father was a merchant […]

A Sparkling Success “I love pearls for their colour and lustre and they are very tactile”

In an interview with OCA magazine, jeweller Gulsara Davis, a linguist by education, but according to her nature a creative personality, tells of her life in London, to where she moved from Bishkek a couple of years ago and how she is fascinated by the creation of pearl jewellery. OCA: Tell us a little about […]

Azat Akimbek: Art Collector, Antiques Expert and Philanthropist

Azat Akimbek is a distinguished expert in art and antiques and a well-known philanthropist in Kazakhstan. He is renowned for his unique collections of antiques from Central Asian, Caucasian and Russian heritage. Azat holds a special award ‘The Honorary Arts Worker of the Republic of Kazakhstan’. In 2011, Akimbek was awarded the ‘Barys’ State Order […]


Motto: «World without national or government borders! We are one! We are a single field!» Project description. Photo project “On the Great Silk Road” is a showcase of diverse eastern women living in Kazakhstan. This manifold is shown as a gallery of feminine types through images in eastern outfits. These are stylized eastern images of […]

Sharaf Rashidov’s 100th birth anniversary: remembering the Uzbek statesman and a writer

This year marks the 100th anniversary since birth of Sharaf R. Rashidov, the first secretary of the Uzbek communist party (in office from 1959 until 1983). Rashidov was born on November the 6th 1917, the day before the Bolsheviks under Lenin seized power in Russia. His birthday seems symbolical as he would become the highest […]

The Marzia Zakiryanova Prize

On August 1st 1991, Marzia Zakiryanova’s life had been split in two through a single twist of fate which left this mother of two small children disabled. Narrating her tale of self-conquest, the author speaks about how she managed to hold her family together and win the respect and recognition of people around her. By […]

The Sara Ishanturaeva Prize

Sara Ishanturaeva was a renowned theatre and film actress, People’s Artist of the USSR and icon of dramatic art in Soviet Uzbekistan. Along with holding an extensive resume of outstanding roles in plays such as Ostrovskii’s Thunderstorm and Shakespeare’s Hamlet and Othello, Sara was also the deputy to the 2nd, 3rd and 4th convocations of […]

Poetry before Prose. Interview with the winner of the Arkadiy Bezrukov Prize at the Open Eurasian Book Forum and Literature Festival

OCA: Pavel, you graduated from the geography department of the Novosibirsk State Pedagogical University. Did your studies help in the writing of your story? Pavel Shumov: I was lucky, I chose to study in this field and it has organically become my life. Geography as a profession is impossible without expeditions, hiking, trips etc, where […]

Crimean Tatar Novelist Emerges from the Shadows Cengiz Dağcı

“The War was not our War! And this war of not ours had found us somewhere, somehow. It took us by its severe storm and threw us where we are right now!”  Cengiz Dağcı said and added, ‘Fifty years! Fifty years away from my homeland, it became a wound that never heals…That wound never healed, […]

No Art is too small. Interview with minaturist painter Olim Kamalov

Olim Kalimov is one of the few miniaturist painters in Tajikistan. Demonstrating his own specific comprehension of Persian miniature classical art, Kamalov’s works encapsulate his knowledge of tradition, as seen in his use of colour and his fine brushwork. The inimitable beauty of the miniature comes from the refined lines, the brilliance and genteless of […]

In the Memory of Kazat Akmatov 1941–2015

Born in 1941 in the Kyrgyz Republic under the Soviet Union, Akmatov has first-hand experience of extreme political reactions to his work which deemed anti-Russian and anti-communist, resulted in censorship. Determined to fight for basic human rights in oppressed countries, he was active in the establishment of the Democratic Movement of Kyrgyzstan and through his […]


OCA #22 SUMMER 2016 WWW.OCAMAGAZINE.COM OCA: Kamal, please briefly tell us about yourself and your film making. Kamal Hasanov: I was born and raised in Azerbaijan, in Baku but I received my higher education in America. After returning, I began to work at the Central Bank of Azerbaijan and after four years working as a […]


OCA #21  SPRING 2016  WWW.OCAMAGAZINE.COM INTERVIEW WITH ACTOR RASHID SHADAT Uzbek actor, Rashid Shadat talks to OCA’s Aleksandra Vlsasova about his life as an international actor. 2015 saw him involved in many well known films and television programs, including 24 (TV series), Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, Now You See […]