War Apotheosis, Gohar Smoyan/Sargis Hovhannisyan

Project concept


“Crisis” is an international word which has a quite interesting chain of explanation: decision, turning point, revolution, times of changing reality, a twist, situation where tools to fulfill goals become not adequate resulting in unpredictable situations and issues. When analyzing crisis from social-political, and socio-economic perspective, it appears to be the state of desperateness -a wall. And upon realizing the presence of crisis, also purposefulness and a will to destroy that wall. Crisis in a country immediately affects an individual, who at that state of being, will rely on foreign states rather than his/her country. The way crisis plays with an individual, the same way when realizing, an individual plays with it. Unfortunately, the positive and encouraging wave of post-revolution mood did not involve in its solutions for getting out of a war crisis that has been going on in Armenia since the 1990s and has no recorded any positive progress. We have not been able to get rid of the most important and almost unchanged crisis – the war crisis. The “lack” of real peace is a big issue, also in the whole world. With our creative team, we will try to present a project which is essential and necessary for our country’s peace as well it integrates the whole world and can be called the most impactful message for peace.

The motivation for our project was thought of a young soldier, who had participated in the April War and had come back without any injuries perfectly performing his duties to his homeland.


Unload your bullets in the fields…not in the battlefield. Find the poetry of weapons, alienated from the rhythm of the bullets; the “sounds” of the red blood are not 40 gunfire in one minute, its a perfect transformation, in place of blood and distorted skin is the worst music….let yourself go…shootings.

                                                                       April War Participant


“War Apotheosis” art project is an essential pulsation for a society which will discuss various global issues. It gives an opportunity to get out of ignorance, moral, or emotional numbness, which is typical to contemporary society. Even if emotions are anger and powerlessness, the project helps to explore it from a collective unconscious state.

“War Apotheosis” represents an art object, and the inner meaning of it will be more consolidated when people interactively participate. The object represents a chessboard which instead of chess pieces, there are cartridges. In the field of art, there have been experiments with bullets that have been transformed into jewelry or flowers for a long time, which try to often the state of war but it is more critical to prevent ammunition from functioning. During the project, people will try to “play” chess where instead of black and white chess pieces, there are similar bullets. People will be allowed to choose either to play or not. The ones who choose to play will be in a difficult situation since the chess pieces are the same, and it is difficult to differentiate from each other, and there is no “mine and yours.” Anyways the “winner” of the game loses. The project will travel to three cities in Armenia – Yerevan, Gyumri, and Shushi and the residents of the cities will participate in the game. At the end of the project, the chessboard that will already have the bullets attached to it will become a statue-object and will be given to Artskakh to show the world that the message for peace starts right from there.





Gohar Smoyan was born in 1978, in Gyumri  From 1995-2000 she studied and graduated from M. Nalbandyan pedagogical institute, bio-chemistry department, from 2000-2006 she studied in graphics department at Gyumri branch of Yerevan Academy of Fine Arts. From 2008 she started to work at Yerevan Academy of Fine Arts, Gyumri branch as a professor. As an artist, works with various expressive means: visual art, music, video in modern art.

Participated at group and individual exhibitions, art festivals, artists exchange programs in Armenia, Russia, Turkey, France, Poland, Austria, Netherlands, Germany. She curated some projects in social-educational, economy-political field-22nd international symposium dedicated to AIDS in the framework of art-health context, Amsterdam, Netherland, 2018, Forum of Coordinators and curators in the framework of urban field, Germany, Berlin-2018, Armenia’s “Standart” modern art Triennale (curator Adelina von Furstenberg), 2017 , group exhibition, Metz, France (9 gallery, 2016 “The way it wants” individual exhibition, ), 25 gallery next to Berlin hospital in Gyumri, Armenia, 2016 “Alexandropol-Leninakan-Gyumri” Armenia’s national cultural gallery in Moscow, Russian Federation, 2016, Exhibition of diaspora artists, Diarbekir, Turkey, 2016, group exhibition in the framework of Benetton (Venice, 2015, ) Annual alternative art festival of Armenian Center for Contemporary Experimental Art, Yerevan, Armenia, 2014.

Sargis Hovhannisyan was born in 1983, in Gyumri, lives and works in Armenia.

From 2000-2006 he studied and graduated from graphics department at Yerevan State Academy of Fine Arts, Gyumri branch.

From 2013-2019 he worked in Yerevan State Academy of Fine Arts, Gyumri branch as a professor. Since 2019 he works in Yerevan as a deputy director in Nikolay Nikoghosyan cultural foundation.

Sargis Hovhannisyan works with various expressive means-video art, graphics, installation and other art formats. He participated in different group, individual exhibitions, art festivals, artists’ exchange programs, international biennales in Armenia, Hungary, Poland, Germany, Austria, France, Turkey, Russia, Ukraine, Moldova, Latvia, Georgia. He has implemented various curators’ projects.

2019- «Out of the shadows» Armenian Center for Contemporary Experimental Art, Yerevan, Armenia, 2019-  8th international residency of Graphics, Marc Rotco art center, Daugavpils, Latvia, 2018- «Unable to choose» – Modern Art Museum, Yerevan, Armenia, 2017-Anticorruption – international wallpaper, AGBU, Yerevan, Armenia, 2016- CIVIC LAB MEDIA – OSTRALLE016 Dresden, Germany, 2016 – «5th floor»- Bottega gallery, Metz, France 2015 Culture-Contact international art residency, Vienna, Austria 2015 «Cabin-city» Emil Aregak center, Gyumri, Armenia, 2015, Biennale Di Venezia – Venice, Italy,  2008–2012թթ. International Biennale of Gyumri, Armenia.