Artist and illustrator Garif Basyrov (1944–2004) was born in ALZHIR (the Russian acronym for the Akmolinsk Camp for Wives of Traitors of the Homeland), aka Point No. 26 on the Karlag map. In the 1960s, he studied in Moscow, first at the then well-known art high school (MSKhSh) under the Surikov Institute and then at the Art Department of the Institute of Cinematography (VGIK). His graduation project was a set of illustrations to Bulgakov’s Master and Margarita, which is now mandatory reading on the school curriculum but in those years was virtually forbidden and mostly available in samizdat form. One of his early exhibitions took place in 1970 in the editorial office of Yunost’ (Youth) magazine, another legendary place of the period. Many people first came to know him as an illustrator of the magazine Khimia i zhizn (Chemistry and Life), which was an island of liberal thinking in vast marshes of cultural stagnation that characterized the Brezhnev Era.
Garif Basyrov.Total Inventory consists of eight volumes in a cardboard slipcase. Seven of the books are dedicated to individual series or cycles of works. A separate biographical volume includes photographs and materials from the family archive that give the most complete picture of the artist’s life. The monograph is published by Mardjani.