I had to get rid of the percepts I had been taught, so mundane and obtrusive, and to find my own idiom, without utilizing that of others. I began to look for more stable and simpler forms and colors, to convey the pictorial essence of reality. My goal has been to achieve with very simple means, and without any ponderousness, the maximum expression. What I mean is the power of expression with which all true works of art have been invested, from antiquity to our own day.
… Light, color, content, form, organic fusion of nearby objects and their parts should be conveyed without any redundance. It is that difficult easiness which is apparent in the works of the eminent masters of all times. It is vital to develop in yourself the ability to see and understand things promptly and to convey them promptly, at the same time it is necessary to know measure.
                                                                                                               MARTIROS SARIAN
    MARTIROS  SARIAN  »  Biography

   

Martiros Sarian (1880 -1972) is one of the greatest painters of the 20th century, an outstanding colorist.
"Color is a genuine miracle", the painter exclaimed. "In combination with sunlight, it expresses the spirit of object's shape and the essence of universal existence".

   

Sarian's paintings, created in bright, saturated colors represent a new aesthetic perception enable us to understand that art is not only an imitation of reality, but it is the use of free imagination and abstraction. At the same time, Sarian exploits simple natural shapes in his paintings, always believing nature to be his main mentor.

In the beginning of the 1910's, Sarian was a bold innovator, who brilliantly united artistic traditions of the East with new trends of the twentieth century European painting. The artist was recognized in Russia, where some of his paintings were purchased by the famous Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow, others were exhibited in Europe.

In 1921, Sarian settled in Armenia, to participate in its spiritual rebirth. The ideology of the Soviet country where he dwelt had created certain difficulties for the artist’s free creative evolution. But the artist remained loyal to the principles of his own style. The earlier elaborated artistic techniques and ways of expression were enriched with new content. As a founder of the modern Armenian school of painting, Sarian asserted in his art the timeless and humanistic values of lofty art. That’s why his artistic legacy is worldwide.

 


1880 -1896

Martiros Sarian was born on February 29, 1880 in the Armenian town of Novaya Nakhichevan, situated near the Don river in Russia (presently part of Rostov-on-Don). Sarian's ancestors originated from Ani - the ancient capital of Armenia...

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1897 -1903

In 1987 Martiros Sarian became the student of the Moscow College of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture.
The youth began to imbibe eagerly all the wealth of the Russian capital’s cultural life. Theatres, libraries, concerts, exhibitions: all these captivated him and facilitated the education...

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1904 -1909

Trips to the Caucasus in 1901-1903 were a true revelation for Sarian. In the summer of 1902, Sarian visited Ani, the old capital of Armenia. "In the picturesque nooks of the south of our ancient country, I found again the magic world of my childhood", recalls the artist...

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1910 -1913

The interest in Eastern culture was determinative in the development of 20th century European and Russian art.
But for Sarian, a painter of Armenian origin, the appeal to the East was an important self-revelation...

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1914 -1920

Sarian was extremely demanding on himself and he would always feel real art. 'I was afraid my success will result in appearance of cliches in my art. I did not want to become a fashionable artist,' he confessed. 'I felt an urgent need to renew my art'...

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1921 -1925

On the invitation of A. Myasnikyan, chairman of People's commissioner's council, Sarian permanently moved to Yerevan with his family. He organized a State museum of archeology, ethnography, and fine arts...

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1926 -1928

After the success at Moscow exhibition, Sarian got an opportunity to travel abroad.
"I certainly wanted to visit the capital of artists - Paris", Sarian confessed...

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1929 -1945

Fate had prepared an ordeal for the artist. However, Sarian mobilized all his will as it was typical for a creator of such a remarkable life-asserting art and returned to work...

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1946 -1972

Sarian's original and innovative art always evoked controversial opinions. In 1941, the artist was awarded the State Prize for designing the "Almast" opera by A.Spendiarov...

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