Lucy Tutunjian: A painter with a sparkling sense of joie the vivre and a lasting vision, dies
February 02, 2021
At h-pem, we are saddened to hear that Lucy Tutunjian, the Lebanese-Armenian painter, who celebrated nature, life, and hope for over six decades, passed away two days ago. She was the benefactor of the Hamazkayin "Lucy Tutunjian" Art Gallery. Her energetic and vibrant presence will be missed by all who knew her.
Widely known for her flair for vivid colors and light, Lucy was a household name, whose uninterrupted passion for the creative process, charity exhibitions, and patronage for the arts, left an indelible mark on Lebanese contemporary art.
Born in Egypt, and having lived in Lebanon since 1950, Lucy was part of both cultures. She took her first tentative steps as an artist under the guidance of the renowned painter Puzant Godjamanian, whose expressionist style, and themes derived from the Egyptian countryside, made an impact on her artistic development. She honed her painting skills with Paul Guiragossian, the legendary Lebanese Armenian master of figurative painting, to become a leading woman painter in the country she adopted as her home.
Lucy’s art was inspired by the sunny landscapes and the colorful people of the Middle and Far East. There is a palpable sincerity, exuberance and optimism to her paintings, without being embellished or showy.
“A painting requires a little mystery, some vagueness, and some fantasy,” said Edgar Degas. Lucy knew exactly what he meant. Despite her ability to create a harmonious vibe in each of her exhibitions, her paintings are spontaneous glimpses of nature, family life, characters, and objects — rendered in a bright palette of contrasting greens, blues, yellows, and reds.
As one of the last-generation of influential artists who experienced the art scenes of both pre- and post-civil war Lebanon, the octogenarian painter left a lasting legacy— the Hamazkayin "Lucy Tutunjian" Art Gallery, to promote artistic endeavors and collaborations in the region.
The gallery was opened in 2009, on the premises of our parent organization, the Hamazkayin Armenian Educational and Cultural Society, as part of its cultural activities. Ever since, it has become a central hub for artists and art lovers from across the country, Armenia, Artsakh, and beyond.
Check out Lucy’s paintings from her last exhibition at the Hamazkayin "Lucy Tutunjian" Gallery in the video section below.
Lucy Tutunjian exhibition
(Video: Hamazkayin Art Gallery YouTube page)
Lucy Tutunjian exhibition
On this day in 1899, Yervand Kochar was born. An avant garde artist and sculptor, Kochar was an integral force in the development of 20th century art, founding the Painting in Space art “movement”—in its most literal sense.
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To bring something into existence is to create—and “creativity takes courage.”
World-renowned French painter Henri Matisse was not wrong when he said these words. Youth are often not given the chance (or the encouragement) in the world of scribbling and sketching. The situation is not too different in the capital of Lebanon, where the Armenian youth of Beirut are often required to get into the more “serious” fields of study.
On Sept. 5, the Hamazkayin Lucy Tutunjian Art Gallery held the opening of their first “Collective Exhibition of Young Artists,” a long-overdue and most welcomed event.
We at h-pem make it one of our top priorities to ensure that Armenian artists from all around the globe get the exposure they deserve on our platforms. That is why we went ahead and asked the Beirut exhibition participants three simple questions. Through their answers, we present you the 10 young artists who got the opportunity to display and sell their art at the gallery.