Osman Hamdi Bey
Osman Hamdi was born in İstanbul , December 30, 1842. He was the son of Grand vizier of Ottoman
Empire. In 1860 , he was sent to Paris for law education. In addition to taking law education, Osman
Hamdi took art lessons as well in workshops of famous painters.
In 1869 , Osman Hamdi was appointed to foreign affairs directorate and he worked in palace when he
came back to Turkey. Also , he worked in Müze-i Hümayun. With his works , brilliant period of
Turkish museology started. In 1883 , he established İstanbul Archeology Museum and some other
important faculties of art and profession. ‘’Osman Hamdi Bey’in 1910 yılına kadar devam eden
müdürlüğü zanında müze, dünyanın sayılı müzeleri arasına girerek arkeoloji bilimi için pek çok
önemli keşfe imza atar.’’(http://www.istanbularkeoloji.gov.tr/osman_hamdi_bey).Osman Hamdi was
accepted as a first Turkish archaeologist.
Osman Hamdi enforced the law which prohibits removing antique pieces to abroad. This law was
really important thing in that period of time and this idea had never came into question until 1884.
Osman Hamdi did important archeology excavations in mountain Nemrut ,Lagina and Sayda. In the
excavation of Sayda , he found several antique works including ‘’İskender Lahiti’’ which has been
accepted as a masterpiece of archeology world. All of the antique works are on display in the İstanbul
Archeology Museum which is established and directed by Osman Hamdi.
Besides Museology, Osman Hamdi gave important works in painting. ‘Osman Hamdi Bey, gerek
devlet işlerini yaparken, gerek arkeoloji ve müzecilik çalışmalarını sürdürürken ressamlığını, hiç ihmâl
etmemiş, fırsat buldukça resim yapmıştır.’’ (http://www.restoraturk.com/restorasyon-sanat/resim-ve-
heykel-restorasyonu/65-osman-hamdi-beyin-hayati.html) In his paintings, he used figure composition
style for the first time. Also the effects of orientalism are seen in his works. He drew inspiration from
the works of Gerome and Boulanger while he was taking lessons in Paris. He often used the theme of
women and Turkish culture with western language in his paintings. He was accepted as one of the first
Osman Hamdi has so many important works. Some of them are ‘’Kahve Ocağı(1879)’’,’’İki
Müzisyen Kız(1880)’’ and ‘’Kaplumbağa Terbiyecisi(1906)’’. His most famous painting is
‘’Kaplumbağa Terbiyecisi’’ which represents some tips from Tulip Era and Sadabat Entertainments of
Ottoman Empire period.
1) Istanbul Archaeological Museums:Müze:Osman Hamdi Bey.(n.d)Retrieved March 19,2014,
2) Restoraturk.com: Resim ve Heykel:Osman Hamdi Bey’in Hayatı.(n.d)Retrieved March 10,