Posts Tagged ‘Yerevan’

Artist Marie Adamyan is currently exhibiting her silk paintings at the Bureaucrat Bookstore in Yerevan. This particular show, entitled From the Travel Sketchbook includes all the work she created between 2010 and 2011.

The joyful and bright colors in Marie’s paintings evoke a pleasant, flattering mood for the viewer. Beautiful cities like Venice, London, Prague, Florence, Amsterdam and many others are depicted in her art with rich, warm colors that create a fairy tale atmosphere and exude the optimism and liveliness of childhood. In addition to her paintings, Marie’s beautiful hand painted scarves were also a part of the show.

An architect by profession who graduated from Yerevan State University of Architecture and Construction, Marie has been painting since her childhood and cannot imagine her life   without it. She works with different techniques and mediums, including graphics, oils, silks, batik, etc. She also teaches painting at Democracy Today, a local NGO. (more…)

On April 3rd, Arthur Sakhkalyan’s 12-day photo exhibition “Visions of Paradise” opened in Bureaucrat Bookshop in Yerevan.

While attending the exhibition, my first inclination was to curiously attempt to find the paradise beyond the mystic scenes depicted in the photos. It was interesting to travel the unique world of the artist, who presents the reality of nature and creatures in peaceful, mystic colors and shapes. Every photo has an idea behind it. They really are visions between the known and unknown.

The exhibition is called Visions of Paradise because of the author’s long-standing belief that our perception of the world is of paramount importance. That is to say, our way of seeing things creates the world we live in to a certain extent. Just the act of seeing can make our everyday life a paradise, set on fire by the force that lights the stars, celebrating the mystical oneness of all things, or a hell, a purgatory that creates the sensation of waiting for a bus that never comes. Our choice of perception is not always easy, but it is always free.

“I started pursuing photography in 2003. Back then I was using the Russian Soviet 35 mm camera ‘Zenith’ and I was mainly shooting live rock bands. My degree is not connected to art, it’s in radio engineering, which I studied at the State Engineering University of Armenia from 1999 to 2005,” Sakhkalyan said. “I believe art is not something you can learn somewhere. Learning art does not make you an artist. Art is a state of consciousness. When you create art, you are sharing your consciousness with other people.” (more…)

Art critic and FAR Press Secretary Levon Lachikyan recently held a press conference at Yerevan’s  Urbat Club about how urban environment impacts citizen growth and trajectory. In doing so, he described Yerevan. “In recent years, Armenia’s capital has radically changed its face. Its aesthetic image has been damaged, distorted. As a result, today Yerevan’s architecture is eclectic. There is nothing to distinguish it. It simply lacks a common style. Everyone builds whatever he wants, wherever he wants, whether these new structures be beauty salons, pharmacies, cafes or restaurants.”

“This is incredibly sad,” Lachikyan noted. Years ago Yerevan was known for its cultural spirit. Armenia’s capital gradually ceased being a purely pedestrian city. Today, the whole area is geared toward vehicles, leaving parks and green spaces to deteriorate and be forgotten. It is imperative that such spaces be cherished and protected, he said. (more…)

I was one of the many fortunate Armenians who attended the November 15 concert of world famous composer Goran Bregovic and his band the Wedding and Funeral Orchestra at Yerevan’s Karen Demirchyan Sport and Concert Complex.

I have to confess that I knew very little about this great musician’s work before attending the show. I was only acquainted with some of his famous songs, especially with those that have been featured in films. Bregovic is well known as the composer for Emir Kusturica’s films like White Cat Black Cat, Arizona Dream, Times of the Gypsies and Underground.

Of course I was expecting to listen to beautiful music that night. What I heard, however, exceeded my expectations. The variety of musical instruments (violin, trumpet, saxophone, accordion) so beautifully intertwined with the variety of voices (bas, baritone, etc.), and created an unbelievable harmony.

During this show, which was called “Alcohol,” he performed some of his most famous songs, including Gas-Gas, Maki Maki, Kalasnikov, Ederlezi, Mesecina and others. During the first half, the musicians even performed the song Happy End from the 2007 album Carmen. The Armenian audience seemed infected by a joyful spirit and the powerful music. (more…)

Armenian-American Nancy Agabian continually finds herself back in her Motherland. Since participating in a conference on feminism in 2005, the New York writer has returned to Armenia many times to share her work. As a Fulbright scholar, she taught at Yerevan State University in 2006 and 2007 and led writing workshops at the Women’s Resource Center this summer.

Nancy is the author of the books Princess Freak, a collection of autobiographical poems and performance texts, and Me as Her Again, a memoir about the influence of her Armenian family and history. Her essays and poems have been published in Ararat, Women Studies Quarterly, Birthmark and Deviation. She is also one of the authors of (An)daratsutian Mej (In the [Un]Space), an experimental book in English, French and Armenian. Currently, Nancy is working on a nonfiction novel on the influences of nationalism, corruption and family on personal freedom in post-Soviet Armenia.

I participated in Nancy’s physical translation workshop this summer and I recently asked her about her work and about the influence Armenia has had on her. (more…)