ARMAVIR, Armenia—The Children of Armenia Fund (COAF) and the Levon Galchian Studio Arts and Crafts Center recently held the “Accomplishment 2011” Crafts Exhibition Fair, where the artwork of children from rural Armenia were displayed. The event was held as part of the Handicrafts Development Project, which was initiated and implemented jointly by the COAF and the Studio in early 2011. The event also exhibited the works of the best Armenian craftsmen, served as the official launch of the Artsrun Berberyan Studio silver workshop, and saw the lighting of the first fire at the newly built Tonratun, or Bread Museum.
The Levon Galchian Studio, located in the Aygegortsakan district of Miasnikian village (Armavir marz of Armenia), hosted the event, featuring the works of artists and craftsmen Michael Mkrtchyan, Ludwig Avetisyan, Anna Kolozyan, Susanna Abovyan, Armen Arakelyan, Sona Danoyan, Karlen Arevikyan, Ararat Martirosyan, and Armen Khachatryan.
The silver studio is being sponsored by the Galchian family and was established with COAF support, and will showcase the works of well-known artist Artsrun Berberyan by his daughter and crafts master Anahit Berberyan.
To promote the making of handicrafts by the rural youth, COAF has supported the development of three distinct workshops at the Levon Galchian Studio—ceramics, metal forgery, and needlework.
Around 35 adolescents from the villages of the Baghramian region of Armavir marz were recruited to the Studio in February 2011 to begin classes in handicrafts. Since their completion of the four-month initial training program, they have been creating their own artwork, with some continuing to work in the Studio as master assistants.
Guests at the Crafts Exhibition Fair also saw the lighting of the Tonratun, where they were offered lavash, traditional Armenian bread. The Tonratun will display a collection of traditional bread-making equipment.
Amid the celebrations were performances by the Van Project, an ensemble—headed by musician Norayr Kalashyan—that plays traditional instruments. Its mission is to research and re-introduce the full variety and richness of Armenian national music to the public.
To learn more about the Studio’s activities or plans for annual fair, or see the artwork of Levon Galchian, the Studio students, or Studio Director Michael Mkrtchyan, visit the Studio’s newly launched website at www.lgstudio.am.
The COAF works to secure a brighter future for children in Armenia’s impoverished rural villages through improved education, healthcare, child and family services, infrastructure rehabilitation, community life, and economic conditions. At their core, COAF programs create and sustain opportunities for growth and progress. Through its holistic and comprehensive approach, COAF envisions a world in which all children have the opportunity to achieve their full potential and in turn contribute meaningfully to their communities and to the world around them. Since 2004, COAF implements its programs in about a dozen villages in the Baghramian and Talin regions of the Armavir and Aragatsotn marzes in Armenia.
Rouben and Mariette Galchian established an art center in Armenia in memory of their son, Levon, who was a talented artist. They built the center outside of Yerevan, in the Movsesashen (Aygegortsakan) district of Miasnikian village. The Levon Galchian Studio opened its doors in 2007, and has been a cozy place where children can paint or work with clay, wood, and stone. The Studio also offers classes in art history, carpet-weaving, and needlework.
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