Azerbaijan International

Winter 1998 (6.4)

Architecture of the Oil Baron Period
Baksovet (City Hall)

4 Istiglaliyat (Independence Avenue)

Baku Oil BaronsThe City Hall is one of the most prominent buildings in Baku. Originally planned as a monumental and ceremonial building, its main façade faces out onto Itiglaliyyat Avenue. Built in the Baroque style, the building was constructed between 1900 and 1904 and has two additional wings that serve as administrative offices for Baku's municipality.

Baksovet which houses the mayor's office. Constructed between 1900 in 1904.

The architect Joseph V. Goslavski (1865-1904) was of Polish descent. He came to Baku in 1891 upon graduation from the Institute of Civil Engineers in St. Petersburg. He soon became one of the most sought-after architects in Polish architect Goslavskithe city.

To this day, his buildings are among the most distinguished in the city. In addition to building Baksovet, he undertook the design for the huge Alexander Nevski Russian Orthodox Cathedral (which Stalin dynamited in the mid-1930s). The
Bul-bul School of Music now stands on the site of the former cathedral. Taghiyev was also the client of Goslavski, commissioning a residence (History Museum), the Musical Comedy Theater (recently rebuilt) and the first Muslim School for Girls (Institute of Manuscripts). Goslavski also built the Ashurbeyov residence. Unfortunately, Baksovet was his last project. He died of tuberculosis upon completion of the building when he was only 39 years old. The Baksovet has always been the city's primary municipality building in Baku. Today, it serves as the Mayor's office.

Above: Portrait is of the Polish architect Goslavski who built the Baksovet (City Hall) as well as residences for Ashurbeyli and Taghiyev. Upon completion of the City Hall, he succombed to tuberculosis and died at the age of 39 in 1904.

From Azerbaijan International (6.4) Winter 1998.
© Azerbaijan International 1998. All rights reserved.

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