Life 100: Master Armenian Artists, Post-Genocide, and LA based Contemporary Exhibition

The Life 100 art exhibition will be held at the Brand Library Art Galleries in Glendale, Calif.


LOS ANGELES—The Life100 art exhibition, to be held at the Brand Library Art Galleries in Glendale, Calif., March 15 to May 1, will uplift, inspire and empower visitors by showcasing over 30 master Armenian artists and 20 contemporary Armenian artists from Los Angeles, whose stories represent the impact of the Armenian Genocide from over 15 countries. The exhibition and related programming is conceived and curated by the Life100 Organizing Committee in coordination with the City of Glendale Library, Arts and Culture Department and the United Armenian Council for the Commemoration of the Armenian Genocide/LA.

The exhibition is a never before seen look at the collective works of Armenia’s Master Artists, and celebrates the contribution of artists of Armenian descent toward re-establishing cultural identity and building creative spirit for the future, highlighting their resilience, strength and creativity in the face of adversity.

“There has always been a strong Armenian presence in the art world. It is now time to recognize the works of these talented individuals during the milestone anniversary of the Armenian Genocide,” states Aida Navasargian, life100’s Director of Marketing. “There are various mediums which exemplify Armenia’s contribution to the visual arts. In addition to painting, we have strived to include sculpture, mixed media, installation, and cinema. The selection of works was a grueling process, but the committee succeeded in gathering works from the finest names in Armenian art.” The works on view come from Southern California private collections and galleries and represent master artists such as Arshile Gorky, John Altoon, and Minas Avetisyan, as well as some of the best local Armenian artists including Joanne Julian, Aram Saroyan and Vahe Berberian.

“The purpose of this exhibition is to celebrate survival, to celebrate life which over the past 100 years has proven to be resilient and creative. We will exhibit works by modern and contemporary artists who despite the personal life challenges, have over come and contributed to in Armenian, Western and world art history,” says co-curator Caroline Tufenkian.

To commemorate this landmark exhibition a catalogue will be published featuring brief biographies of all the artists and beautiful reproductions of their work. Essays by renowned curator and former LA Weekly art critic Peter Frank, scholar Mike Harutunian, and art historian Neery Melkonian will discuss the impact the Armenian Genocide had on culture, creativity and the emergence of new art and artists, as well as examine the significant role artists of the Armenian diaspora have played in the history of modern art. The catalogue will serve as an artistic, historical and celebratory memoir. It is something visitors and proponents of art will cherish. The book will be available for sale at the Brand Library and also on the life100 website.

Life 100 committee members are, Lena Akian, Arda Berberian, Serop Beylerian, Aida Navasargian, Tamar Sianian- Namaan, Caroline Tufenkian and Harry Vorperian

In addition to the ongoing life100 exhibition, the program will include a variety of events to be held at the Brand Library & Art Center. All events are free and open to the public. On Sunday, March 15 at 2 p.m. the grand opening reception for life100 takes place. Sunday, March 22, from 2 to 7 p.m. the Institute of Armenian Studies at the University of Southern California presents a slate of short documentaries by Armenian and Turkish filmmakers that focus on the complex relations between Armenians and Turks in the century after the genocide. Saturday, March 28, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. the Fresno State New Music Ensemble, sponsored by the Brand Associates and the Armenian General Benevolent Union, performs works from contemporary composers dedicated to the 100 year anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.

A panel discussion and signing of the commemorative exhibition catalog takes place on April 4 from 3 p.m to 5 p.m. Panelists includeGaro Antreasean, Peter Frank, Jack Rutberg, Joanne Julian and Neery Melkonian. On April, 11 a symposium organized by 2014 Carl Wilkens fellow Tigranna Zakaryan commemorates the 1915 Armenian Genocide by reflecting on the past century of genocide and mass atrocities while raising awareness towards ongoing genocides beyond our borders. Sunday, April 19 at 2 p.m. Michael Avetisyan presents classics by Armenian composer Komitas. Lastly, the REEL ART Film Series sponsored by the Brand Associates on April 30, from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. will feature a screening of Sergei Parajanov’s The Color of Pomegranates (1968) followed by a closing reception for life100.

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