Depository of Photos and Negatives

The Depository of Photos and Negatives houses up to 100,000 exhibits which depict the history of Georgian theatre, music, cinema and choreography from the late 19th century onwards. Apart from numerous photos, glass negatives kept in the museum reflect the development of the history of Georgian and foreign theatre, music, cinema and choreography. The collection comprises the private archives of eminent actors and directors who made a valuable contribution to the development of Georgian theatre, music, cinema and choreography (such as Vaso Abashidze, Lado Alexi-Meskhishvili, Mako Saparova, Valerian Gunia, Elisabed Cherkezishvili, Kote Meskhi, Sandro Akhmeteli, Kote Marjanishvili, and Vaso Kushitashvili).

The museum keeps photos of the first Georgian national choirs and composers: Lado Aghniashvili, Joseb Ratili, Pilimon Koridze, Zakaria Paliashvili, Sandro Inashvili, Dimitri Arakishvili, Andria Balanchivadze, Shalva Mshvelidze; scenes from the first Georgian movies: Akaki's Trip to Racha-Lechkhumi, Kristine, Arsena Jorjiashvili, My Grandmother, Amoki, Saba and The Last Masquerade; and the private archives of Ivan Perestiani, Alexander Tsutsunava, Nikoloz Shengelaia, Vladimir Barks, Mikheil Chaiureli, Alexander Dighmelovi, Rezo Chkheidze, Tengiz Abuladze, and Giorgi and Eldar Shengelia. There are numerous materials of opera and theater plays from the post-revolution period which give important information about great actors and actresses: Akaki Khorava, Akaki Vasadze, Veriko Anjaparidze, Sesilia Takaishvili, Sergo Zakariadze, Ushangi Chkheidze, Vaso Godziashvili, Alexander Zhorzholiani, amongst others.

Further, the depository keeps a rich photo archive of 19th-century ethnic minorities and diaspora.

There are photos of the buildings of theatres, a philharmonic hall, and a circus, and photos of tours of a number of Georgian troupes, orchestras and quartets. Photos taken by famous photographers Dimitri Ermakov, Alexander Roinishvili, Eduard Klar, Alexander Mikhailov, Vladimir Barkanov, Alexander Germani, and Abram Nordshtein depict scenes and characters of Georgian plays as well as historical buildings. The museum also has a vast collection of postcards from the late 19th century through to the 20th century.