Albanian sword gifted to Khrushchev

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times April 22, 2019 12:08

Albanian sword gifted to Khrushchev

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  • In the photograph taken in Pietro Marubi's studio, he poses proudly with his national costume and with his father's sword Bibë Dodë, a gift from Napoleon III, which during the communist regime was allegedly donated to Nikita Khrushchev during the visit in Albania in 1959.

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TIRANA, Apr. 18- Among the many photos exhibited at the “Marubi Dynasty: One Hundred Years of Albanian Photographic Studio” curated by Kim Knoppers at the Marubi Museum, was noticed a picture that serves as historical evidence. In the central picture is seen Prenk Bib Doda (1858-1919), one of the most important personalities of Albanian political history. He was Prince of Mirdita, one of the leaders of the League of Prizren, a commander of the forces for the protection of Hoti and Gruda, he served twice as Deputy Prime Minister, the first term under Ismail Qemali and his first Albanian government, and was twice as Minister of the World Affairs.

In the photograph taken in Pietro Marubi’s studio, he poses proudly with his national costume and with his father’s sword Bibë Dodë, a gift from Napoleon III, which during the communist regime was allegedly donated to Nikita Khrushchev during the visit in Albania in 1959. The image was published with this explanation by the museum itself.

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Though the Marubi had a commercial activity, this did not stop them from experimenting with new techniques at any moment. Pietro made a collage by extracting fragments from different photographs and then reproducing them as a single image. He also experimented with the stereoscopic photograph, which was further perfected by Kel Marubi, but found little use. Gega, the last of the dynasty, used the infrared photo for the first time in Albania.

But it’s not just the prince’s picture that focuses or preserves the image of a gunman at that time. Another image that is part of the exhibition is a picture taken in the studio of Kel Marubi, that of the handing over weapons, in which we see Captain Mark Raka – the second by the left with the decree in hand – after the adoption of the law on the surrendering of weapons from the 1922 government, and bayraktar from Shala Lush Prela on mountain clothing, who reads the decree, handing over the gun. This image that is one of the most renowned archives of Marubi for the important historical moment that it presents, as well as the artistic and cultural values it carries, is central to one of the sections of the exhibition. Three generations of photographers have made portraits of a wide variety of people, ranging from urban bourgeois, to shepherds, images from the times of the Ottoman Empire and King Zog to criminals, famous actors and painters.

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Tirana Times
By Tirana Times April 22, 2019 12:08