The City of Dove Women
May 18 - August 12, 2023
New York, 2023 – Atamian Hovsepian Curatorial Practice is pleased to present The City of Dove Women, an immersive installation by Arpi Adamyan on view from May 18 to June 24, 2023.
Adamyan is inspired by Armenian fairy tales, bird-human hybrid motifs from Armenian Medieval manuscripts, as well as Soviet Armenian Modernist architecture. Formation, rebirth, and growth lie at the core of her work. Adamyan combines handmade porcelain and clay objects with digital works on screens to create seamless life-affirming worlds from communal trauma, a futuristic biorealm that the viewer can see from multiple angles and entry points. Adamyan’s work touches upon the notions of indignity or naturalization to an area one lives in. As anthropologist Nelly Sargsyan suggests, drawing on Robin Kimmer, this means to care about the place as if it were an extension of your natural self, or “to live as if your children’s future matters.” Jellyfish, playful porcelain shapes and figures–some recalling female or male bodily organs–point to a word beyond hate and scarcity, to one of abundance and care where genocide, nationalism, and imperialism may one day be things of the past. Adamyan invites the viewer to imagine a future different from the global doomsday often described by mainstream media; it also contributes to both Armenofuturism and feminist futurism.
The work is timely, given the recent 2020 war in Artsakh waged against the indigenous Armenian population, and in the greater context of the cycle of conflicts (genocide, imperialism, and nationalism) that has long enveloped the Caucasus region.
Arpi Adamyan is a multimedia artist and a children’s book illustrator who creates world building projects. Her installations are charged with historical citations and speculations concerning a futuristic biotechnological realm. Adamyan holds MFA degrees from Yerevan State Academy of Fine Arts (2007) and the Parsons School of Design at the New School (2019). She has served as one of the board members of Utopiana Swiss Armenian cultural organization from 2006-2009. In 2007 she co-founded Queering Yerevan Collective with fellow artists, writers, curators and activists. Her work has been shown internationally, including VI Gyumri International Biennial of Contemporary Art (2008, Armenia), FilmIdyll Festival (2009, Sweden), Decolonizing the City (2012, Germany), Take Place by VBKÖ (2013, Austria), Suzanne Lacy’s International Dinner Party in Feminist Curatorial Thought (2015, Switzerland), and others.