About History – The Photography of Dmitri Ermakov
Dmitri Ivanovich Ermakov was born in Tiflis (the old name for Tbilisi) in Georgia in 1846. After graduating from the military topographic academy in Ananuri he opened his own photographic studio in Tiflis and by the end of the 1870s he was a renowned photographer, winning awards in many exhibitions in Moscow, Italy, Turkey and Persia.
Ermakov’s passion was ethnographic photography and he visited many remote parts of the Caucasus, Central Asia and Anatolia where he was the first to take photos of the inhabitants of villages of different nationalities.
After the death of Ermakov in 1916 his huge photographic collection was purchased by the University of Tiflis, and later passed to the Tbilisi State Museum. Very few of Ermakov’s pictures have been published but the ones that have include several studies of life in Tiflis (Tbilisi).
Over the years, Ermakov published a hundred and ninety two albums of his photos of the ethnic groups, villages and towns, roads and monuments of the Caucasus. In a catalog printed at the turn of the century he advertised a photo stock of 25 thousand items.
Once Ermakov’s entire collection is made public it will be an incredible archive for research.