Creatively focused and noteworthyPhoto credit: Norayr Kasper, "I Will Talk to You About Time." Fotoistanbul 2015.
Post-genocide creative vision: A seminar for Armenian youth on culture and identity How has the trauma of the Armenian Genocide become part of the collective unconscious of Armenian culture and identity in the diaspora? What contribution have artists and cultural institutions made to the shaping of who we are as individuals and as communities? Can art heal our enduring traumas? Searching for answers? Read on…
Algorithms for loss: By Alan Semerdjian Something extraordinary happened on the day award-winning writer, musician, and educator Alan Semerdjian released a collaboration of poems and sound with guitarist/composer Aram Bajakian—Kim Kardashian tweeted about his project The Serpent and the Crane! While a lot has happened in the world since then, including the COVID-19 pandemic and the 44-day Artsakh war, Semerdjian went on to write an essay, a meditation about that actual day, April 24th 2020. He generously contributed his compelling story to h-pem because he believes it “should live in the world.” Experimental in form and delivery, the essay is an attempt to tackle broader issues, such as the nature of virality, how to process and share difficult and hard to digest art, the question of Armenian identity, genocide denial—all still relevant and resonant. Check out Semerdjian’s wonderfully intuitive, extremely timely and profound story as it unravels in real time below…
Where “bad Europe” met “bad Asia:” Alexander Tamanian brought the Mountain home As high-rise buildings continue to pop up across different parts of Yerevan—often than not replacing structures deemed to be of historical and architectural significance, we cannot help but wonder to what extent Tamanian’s master plan of the city, which was only partly implemented, is different from today’s metropolis.
The Komitas Museum-Institute: A shrine worthy of a joyful spirit Every year thousands of people step into the Komitas Museum-Institute in Armenia to learn about the creative world of Komitas Vardapet, his extraordinary gift as a composer, his noble mission as a collector of Armenian folk songs, his captivating spiritual music, and his inspiring, yet tragic life. On a visit to the museum, we talked with a couple of experts about the challenges of showcasing an icon who is revered as the founder of the Armenian national school of music.