The Voice of Queer Feminist Activists and Scholars in Conjunction with
Feminist Art from Armenia
Curator: Susanna Gyulamiryan
The project "About Revolution and Power" is dedicated to all the women
who have been participants, initiators and organizers of political and
civil protest, struggles and resistance in Armenia for more than two
decades, the ones who have shaped and directed women's movements,
initiated queer feminist discourses and defined the developmental paths
of the critical thinking in the country, where there is still no public
recognition of women's achievements. What women do and contribute to the
country's welfare is buried under patriarchal ideology and masculine
hegemony, based on the idea of male supremacy.
The important feature of the project articulates Armenian female
artists' activism that moves in stride with political, civil, social and
feminist movements. Meanwhile, political and feminist activism in turn
borrows methods from artistic practices and applies them in its
multimedia arsenal of performance, action art, manifests, graffiti, and
Thе impulse towards politicization paved the way for highly motivated
female artists, who gained strength and momentum to break out of the
limited spaces designated to the field of art, and the ideas of
autonomy, political commitment, and enthusiasm for appropriating streets
and public spaces were promoted and nurtured. A fresh direction lies in
the cooperation of the political and the aesthetic, female artists and
feminist activists who, together, do not hesitate to act and campaign
against injustice and inequality in the country and who develop concepts
and actions to encourage political and social reforms in Armenia.
One part of the project presents the video series entitled "Dialogues
about Revolution and Power," which consists of critical reflections and
artistic manifestations by female experts, scholars, and queer feminist
activists from Armenia – *Gayane Ayvazyan*, *Ruzanna Grigoryan*, *Anna
Nikoghosyan* and *Anna Zhamakochyan* – on the topic of the 2018 Armenian
revolution, which, according to one of the participants, was rather a
regime change than a revolution.
In pair with the video documentation of artist *Narine Arakelian's*
reenactment of the notorious women's civil disobedience action "Cast
Iron Pots and Pans" in the public spaces of Venice, engaging over 50
women volunteers, the above mentioned "Dialogues" make up the most
important part of the Armenian Pavilion of the 58th International Art
Exhibition, La Biennale di Venezia (2019).
The entire project of the pavilion curated by Susanna Gyulamiryan is an
artistic and analytical representation of the Armenian revolution of
2018. It brings together artists, scholars, and activists to reproduce
the revolutionary events and reflect on them.
The dynamics of the development of women's and feminist movements
starting from the early Soviet period until the post-Soviet 1990s,
reviewing the role of these movements in the context of their
"negotiations" with the authorities and state institutions is presented
by Tamar Shirinian – scholar and specialist on Women's and Gender Studies.
Artist *Lusine Talalyan* presents her feminist call that "woman is
owner-less," as well as the arm-less image of monumental statue of
Mother Armenia during a shame-less orgasm. (The statue of Mother Armenia
in Yerevan is an image of a masculine woman with a sword in her arms.
This kind of patri-archaic presentation through certain formal and
stylistic attributes is a symbol of power, and some researchers call
this kind of creature "matri-archaic").
The two graphic works by *Lusine Navasardyan* are about the consequences
and "wounds" of the ideological and physical struggle of the Armenian