Armenian Culture, Science and Education Development Foundation

Armenian Program at the 14th Istanbul Biennial became a celebrated event at the 14th Istanbul Biennial became a celebrated event

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The presentation of the Armenian program for the 14th Istanbul Biennial of contemporary art, for which the project Dilijan Art Initiative of Initiatives for Development of Armenia (IDeA) Charitable Foundation acted as main sponsor, became a celebrated event during the Biennial’s opening days.

Initiating implementation of the Armenian program as part of the 14th Istanbul Biennial was the Biennial’s curator, Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, who in her speech at the presentation noted the importance and timeliness of discussion of the events which occurred in Turkey one hundred years ago.

Thanks to the support of Dilijan Art Initiative, Christov-Bakargiev gathered Armenian and Turkish artists, artists of the Armenian Diaspora and artists from across the world, who through their works have spoken about the topic of the Armenian Genocide.


“Support from Dilijan Art Initiative gave us the opportunity to bring to the Biennial the works of the founder of abstract impressionism Arshile Gorky, who experienced the horrors of genocide, the paintings of the modernist and creator of new forms of abstraction, the Lebanese artist Paul Guiragossian, whose mother also fled persecution, the remarkable sculptures of Sonia Balassanyan and the philosophical installations of Anna Boghiguian”, Christov-Bakargiev said during the presentation.

The sponsorship of Dilijan Art Initiative encompassed not only Armenian artists. “We are not nationalists, but internationalists; we span the entire Universe”, emphasized the curator of the 14th Istanbul Biennial. “Also created with support from Dilijan Art Initiative were the delightful black and white film by Francis Alys “Silence of Ani” and complex installations by Michael Rakowitz and Kristina Buch”.

Dilijan Art Initiative is a new project of IDeA Charitable Foundation, the goal of which is to transform the city of Dilijan into an international center of the arts and education. Implementation of the project, envisioning the creation of a wide range of venues inspiring creativity and academic studies with an emphasis on intercultural dialogue between East and West, is scheduled for 2016.

Presenting the project to artists, curators, gallery owners and other guests of the presentation were its Art-Curator Vadim Grigoryan and Cofounder of IDeA Foundation Veronika Zonabend.

“Art possesses a unique language, understood by all people of the world. We believe in the importance of intercultural dialogue. For example, operating in Dilijan since 2014 is the international school UWC Dilijan, where young people from 64 countries are currently studying and which is already a platform for international collaboration. And Dilijan Art Initiative will become another platform aimed at furthering universal mutual understanding”, stated Veronika Zonabend.

The 14th Istanbul Biennial will operate until November 1, 2015.

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