«Dreams of Armenia»

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“Dreams of Armenia”, an exhibition by Ilya Vartanian, is set to open in the Moscow Multimedia Art Museum within the program of XII International Moscow Photobiennale. This year Photobiennial’s major topic is the diversity of photography. A photographer’s project on his homeland, Armenia, is not strictly tied to any of contemporary photography’s genres, be it documental photography, photo reports, staged shootings, landscape shots or even fashion photography… It is a multi-structured, poetic narrative that metaphorically brings up images of Armenian heritage—its traditional costumes, rituals, customs, historical jewelry’ ornaments and elements of ancient Armenian architecture. History grows within the modernity in Ilya Vartanian’s photographs. “Dreams of Armenia’’ is the author’s love confession to his homeland. Exhibited at MMAM, Vartanian’s visual poetry naturally “rhymes’’ with movies by a famous Armenian director and a video artist, Sergey Parajanov. Extracts from Parajanov’s cult movie, “The Color of Pomegranates’’, meaningful for every Armenian, are naturally blended into Vartanian’s exposition. The exhibition would also include decorative folklore pieces, such as ancient Armenian rugs, costumes, and jewels from The State Museum of Oriental Art’s collection. These inclusions of a material world, indicative of Armenian history, allow Ilya Vartanian’s exhibition’s narrative to be formed upon counterpoints and various objects—historical pieces, photographs and film extracts all together form a complex melody of the project. I would love to take such an opportunity to cordially thank Tatevik Karapetyan and Tashir Group of Companies for an invaluable aid in the organization of the exhibition. I am also grateful to The State Museum of Oriental Art.»

by Olga Sviblova
Director of Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow (MAMM) 24.04.2018