Collection Type: Museum State agency/ Ministry
Collection Size: > 50,000
Period: 1860-1900 1900-1930
Type of Material & Format: Black and White images Film-based negatives Glass plates positives and/or negatives Prints
The Golestan Palace is the oldest monument in Tehran. It belongs to a group of royal buildings that were once enclosed within the mud-thatched walls of Tehran’s Historic Arg (citadel). The Arg was built during the reign of Tahmasb I (1524-1576) of the Safavid dynasty (1502-1736). Agha Mohamad Khan Qajar (1742-1797) chose Tehran as his capital and the Arg became the site of the Qajar Court (1794-1925). The Golestan Palace became the official residence of the royal family. During the Pahlavi era (1925-1979), the Golestan Palace was used for formal royal receptions. In its present state, the Golestan Palace is the result of roughly 400 years of construction and renovations.
The museum’s archival holdings are comprised of photographs, paintings, and manuscripts from the late Qajar era, and in particular, the period of Nasser al-Din Shah’s reign (1848-1896), as well as a small library. Naser Al-Din Shah (1831-1896) became interested in photography soon after its invention, publishing essays on photographic processes, as did his successor Mozfar Al-Din Shah. As a result, students were often sent to Europe and eventually became teachers in Dar Al-Funun.
The Golestan palace houses around 48,000 photographs, the oldest dating from 1840. The collection is organized according to albums which were made by the Qajar court, and often, by Nasser al-Din Shah himself. The collection, which is partly digitized (around 6,000 images as of 2015), includes approximately 1,000 slides, 1,039 albums and 9,000 glass negatives. The photographs are of various processes and sizes, and were taken in Iran and other countries in Europe, Asia and Africa (e.g. Turkey, Iraq, Egypt, Japan, Russia, Georgia, France, Switzerland, Morocco, India, and Italy). The holdings also include a collection of nitrate films from the early years of Iranian Cinema.
The collection is often referenced in books, articles, postcards, exhibitions, and academic research. Important publications include: Tehran features; Golestan Palace; Like Mirror. The collection is in part accessible to Researchers upon request.
Contact Details: Name: Akram Alibabaei
Address: Tehran, Panzdaeh Khordad, Arq Suquare, Golestan Palace
Tel: (+98) 021 33113335
Dissertation reviews: http://dissertationreviews.org/archives/10352