Group show

EXTENSION.AM: Географический опыт
10.04.2018 – 22.04.2018, Triumph Gallery

Triumph gallery presents EXTENSION.AM: Geographical Experience is an exhibition comprising work of eighteen contemporary artists from Armenia. The exhibition is the new installment of the EXTENSION series that showcases current art scenes from different countries. Project EXTENSION.AM: Geographical Experience is supported by Tatevik Karapetyan, patron of arts, first vicepresident at the Tashir Group.

Sona Abgaryan
Vahram Aghasyan
Arevik Arevshatyan
Diana Hakobyan
Vahagn Hamalbashyan
Edgar Amroyan
Karen Barseghyan
Arman Grigoryan
Ruben Grigoryan
Garik Yengibaryan
David Kareyan
Astghik Melkonyan
Hamlet Hovsepyan
Karen Ohanyan
Arthur Sarkissian
Manan Torosyan
Grigor Khachatryan
Tigran Khachatryan


Curated by Kristina Romanova, curator with Triumph gallery, and Eva Khachatryan, independent curator, Yerevan.


First contemporary art exhibitions in Armenia were held in the 1980s during perestroika. Even behind the iron curtain,
such movements got into and taken root in Armenia as transavantgarde, pop art and abstractionism; they later
informed the beginnings of the art process in the country. In the 1990s, the conditions for art were growing more
favorable in Armenia. Emerging art market, new educational and creative institutions actively promoted by the
government and international diaspora. The powerful intensity of this process manifested in establishment of the
Gyumri Biennal of Contemporary Art in 1998—the first exhibition of its class in any of the former Soviet republics.
Modern art scene in Armenia continues to develop with new educational programs, independent initiatives that
sometimes interface with activist action, for example, the projects by the ArtLabYeravan group. In 2015, the
Armenian pavilion at the 56th Venice Biennale won its highest award, the Golden Lion. In 2017, the first Armenian
triennale of contemporary art Standard was held in Yerevan, Gyumri, on Lake Sevan, and in a number of historical
museums across the nation.

These developments indicate that Armenian artists have recently focused on their own culture, history, daily life and
have been addressing crucial social and political issues more and more. By that logic, EXTENSION.AM: Geographical
Experience invited exclusively the artists who live and work in Armenia, even though the Armenian diaspora globally
exceeds the population of the country almost threefold.

The works at the exhibition at Triumph range in subject matter from memory, trauma, processing of the Sovien past to
the anxiety that came with independence. In cyanotype series Armenian Jeans, artist Karen Barseghyan acts as an
archeologist of loss inflicted in the town of Gyumri in 1988 by an earthquake. Gravity by Vahagn Hamalbashyan,
created as a collage with coal, watercolors, spray paint, stencils and Armenian wine, depicts people waiting for a bus,
a floating cosmonaut, fragments of text, decorative patterns and paint drips. The artist constructs hybrid spaces where
the past is linked to the present through the human dimension. The prevailing technique in works by Arthur Sarkissian
is abstract painterly collage. He reflects on the Soviet past, on the quest for the original sources of the Armenian
culture and the lot of the Armenian people.

Tigran Khachatryan works with social and political criticism. His video Like It or Not: the Armenian Communist
Party Should Be Given to This Young People is a montage of clips, films and news reels about 2015 when Armenia
faced protests against electricity price hikes. Grigor Khachatryan's Those who love me have power over me, greater
power have those whom I love is based on pondering the role of art and artist in the life of the society. The exhibition
also features members of Art Laboratory—Garik Yengibaryan, Karen Ohanyan, Edgar Amroyan—known for their

Works by Arevik Arevshatyan, Sona Abgaryan, Manan Torosyan address the standing of women in modern society.
Arevik Arevshatyan initiated first female exhibitions in Armenia and she continues to work with the changing image
of the woman. Sona Abgaryan creates bright portraits filled with irony and focused on the problems relevant for
young people and women. Manan Torosyan embroiders her works with glitter and beads by hand, which symbolizes
women’s labor that has become part of the fashion industry.

Educational program:


Lecture by Eva Khachatryan “Contemporary art scene in Armenia. Institutions and independent initiatives”
Garage Auditorium
9/32 Krymsky Val st.
7:00 p.m., April 4
Lecture language is Russian


Eva Khachatryan is an independent curator, vice-president of the Armenian charter of the International Association of
Art Critics, member of the International Committee for Museums and Collections of Modern Art. Former curator at
the Armenian Center for Contemporary Experimental Art (ACCEA), 2003–2008, and former official at the ACCEA
Department of Fine Arts, 2006–2008. Founder of the Suburb Cultural Center platform. Eva Khachatryan will deliver a
talk on the emergence of contemporary art institutions in Armenia, the initiatives they pursue and their operational


Meeting with Vahram Aghasyan
Rodchenko School of Photography and Multimedia
2 2st Krasnoselskiy line
12:00, April 5
Lecture language is English with Russian translation

Vahram Aghasyan (b. 1974, Yerevan) is a photographer, artist, curator, theorist and expert in new media. Participant
of high-profile international exhibitions: Tenth International Istanbul Biennial, at the Museum Kiasma in Helsinki,
First Contemporary Art Biennale of Thessaloniki. His works were shown in Contemporary Video Art from Armenia at
Musee d’Art Contemporain, Lyon. Took part in the group show Resistance Through Art in the Armenian Pavilion at
the 51st Venice Biennale in 2005. Represented in the museum collections of M HKA (Belgium), Museum on the
Seam (Israel) and others.
Vahram will share his experience of over two decades in art, curation and art theory.


Meeting with Arman Grigoryan
HSE Art and Design School
12 Malaya Pionerskaya
7:00 p.m., April 5
Lecture language is Russian

Arman Grigoryan (b. 1960, Yerevan) is an artist, the founder of the avant-garde movement in the 1980s Armenia,
pioneer of pop art in Armenia. In 1987, he created a group of young Armenian avant-garde artists Third Floor that
was active until 1994. Grigoryan uses the aesthetics of punk and pop music, works with painting, bright colors,
collage images that mimic the Western advertisement world. From 2005 to 2015, taught at Mkhitar Sebastatsi
Educational Complex in Yerevan. In 2013, Grigoryan curated the Armenian pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale.
Grigoryan will speak about the artist–curator working process.


Meeting with Arevik Arevshatyan
MMOMA, Free Workshops School of Contemporary Art
9 Tverskoy boulevard
7:00 p.m., April 6
Lecture language is Russian

Arevik Arevshatyan (b. 1957) is an artist and independent curator. His personal exhibition was held in Academy
gallery in Yerevan in 2004. With Ruben Grigoryan, launched project Two Artists/One Creation at the Armenian
Center for Experimental Art in 1998. Arevik Arevshatyan participated in group exhibitions in Armenia and
internationally, including: Beyond Icons: Contemporary Art in Armenia (U.S., 2003), Adieu Parjanov: Contemporary
Art from Armenia (Austria, 2003), Art Contemporain d’Arménie (France, 2007), Gender Check Femininity and
Masculinity in the Art of Eastern Europe (Austria, 2009). Her works are represented in private collections and Modern
Art Museum of Yerevan.
Arevik Arevshatyan will speak about her work with painting and photography, sculpture, site-specific installations, as
well as her experience as a curator for first female-artist exhibitions in Armenia.

Public program events are free, registration required.


General Partner:



Opening Partner:


Technical Partner:


Educational program partners:

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EXTENSION Project In 2016, Triumph gallery launched the EXTENSION exhibition series. The project covers
current art scenes in different countries and involves gallery exhibitions, lectures, meetings held jointly with our
institutional partners (Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, Higher School of Economics, Strelka Institute, etc.),
publishing exhibition albums and a parallel program in a leading Moscow museum. After the Moscow opening, the
exhibitions are shown in other Russian cities. Since 2016, the gallery organized exhibitions of artists from Romania,
South Korea, Iran, Estonia, Latvia and Finland.

Tashir is a multi-business group with nation-wide operations. Established in 1999, it comprises over 200 subsidiaries
in different industries, including construction, manufacturing, finance, energy, development, retail, entertainment,
medicine and others. Tashir employs over 45,000 people in 25 locations across Russia and its neighboring states. The
founder and president of the group is Samvel Karapetyan. The group headquarters is in Moscow. The core business of
Tashir is development and management of commercial real estate with a focus on retail properties. Tashir is a leader
on the Russian development market, its portfolio including modern and high-tech projects in commercial real estate
and housing with total floor area of about 2.5 million sqm.

Armenia Art Foundation (Արվեստ Հայաստան հիմնադրամը) is an independent non-profit organization aiming
to support the development of contemporary art in Armenia. The mission of the foundation is to support artists and
professionals working in Armenia in the field of contemporary art, and unlock their creative potential both in the
country and abroad. The foundation supports artists by providing financial support for art projects while initiating new
artistic and educational projects in Armenia which involve local and international artists, curators and theorists. In
2017 Armenia Art Foundation was a partner of the first edition of Standart: Triennial of Contemporary Arts in