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Yervand Kochar

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He was born Yervand Kotcharian (1899-1979) in Tiflis on June 15, 1899 and received a good education from both the Nersessian School which he began attending at age ten. At age fifteen he advanced to the Schmerling Arts and Sculpture School. At age 19 he continued his artistic education in Moscow at the Free Arts Studio where Pyotr (Petrovich) Konchalovsky [3] (1876-1956) was a good mentor. Returning to Tiflis in 1921, he began to establish himself as a serious local artist while teaching painting in Tiflis high schools, eventually earning a Georgian government certificate as a professor.


  • 1899 With Parents Yervand Kotcharian (Kochar) was born in Tbilisi on June 15 to the family of Simon Kotcharian (1866-1933) of Shushi and Pheocla Martirosian (1873-1951).
  • 1909 - 1918 Studies at Nersissian School.
  • 1914 - 1918 Goes to the Arts School of the Caucasus Association Promoting Fine Arts (known as O. Schmerling School), studies in the class of Yegishe Tadevossyan, a prominent Armenian artist.
  • 1918-1919 Studies at Moscow Second State Tree Fine Arts Studios, at P. Konchalovsky's studio (October through August).
  • 1919 -1921 Teaches painting at Tiflis high schools.
  • 1919 Participates with thirty-six works in the second Autumn Exhibition organized by the Association of Georgian Artists (Tiflis).
  • 1920 Participates in the third Autumn Exhibition (Tiflis).
  • 1921 People's Commissariat of the Georgian SSR grants Y. Kotcharian a certificate of State Higher Arts and Technical Studios Professor.
  • 1921 - 1922 Was elected on the exhibition commission of the Union of Armenian Artists and becomes a member of the "HAYARTUN" (House of Armenian Art).

1922 Kochar in 1922 In April heads from Batum for abroad - to Constantinople, then to Venice, Rome, Florence and Paris. Opens an exhibition in Constantinople (June 14th ). In November arrives in Venice, the Mkhitarist Congregation, teaches at Mourad-Rafaelyan College, creates the face sculptures of Cardinal Lafontain, Father Kyureghian, the poet Avetik Issahakian, and studies the rich collection of the Congregation's old Armenian miniature art. 1923 Settles down in Paris (August). Kotchar's first one-man show, organized by Arshak Chopanian, opens in the "Societe des savantes" hall of the "Apaga" (Future) newspaper (September 25th). E. Kotchar's works were praised highly by Edgar Shahin, Hakop Gyurjian and others.

1924 Participates in the "Salon des Independants" exhibition with the canvases "Resurrection" and "Metamorphosis" which attract the attention of prominent art critics (February 19th through March 13th).

His first articles were published in "Revue du vrai et du beau" ("Magazine of Truth and Beauty") and "La Revue Moderne" ("Modern Magazine").

Participates in the "Salon d'Automne " exhibition with the works, "Vision: Christ and Mary Magdalene", "Bacchus" and "Portrait of a Girl". These works were echoed broadly in publications of Cleman Morauz, Raimon Ceiling and Jules de Saint Guiller. 1925 With Vardeni Marries Vardeni in January. Participates in "L'art d'Aujourd'hui" ("Modern Art") international exhibition together with Harp, Brancusi, Delone, Earnst, Grisse, Clei, Leger, Lipschitz, Miraux, Mondrianne, Ozanfan, Picasso and others (November 30th through December 21st). Starts to sign his works (pieces) as Kotchar. 1926 Participates in the exhibition organized by "Salon des Independants" with the canvases "Portrait of a Girl" and "The Houri with Fruit" (April-May). The admirative (delighted) article by the well-known critic Andre Pascal-Levi was published in the "Les Artistes d'Aujourd'hui" ("Artists of Today") magazine.

The one man-show of Kotchar's paintings and graphic works swas opened in "La Sacre du Printemp" Gallery. The author of the catalogue was Valdemar George (October 28th through November 13th). The exhibition was echoed by "Revue du vrai et du beau", "Les Artistes d'Aujourd'hui", "La Revue Moderne" magazines and other periodicals. 1928 In January the media prints sympathizing echoes on the occasion of cases of vandalism towards two sculpture-paintings by Kotchar in the exhibition at the "Salon des Independants". Those works were the first heralds of "painting in the space". In February Dr. Alendi delivers a lecture in Sorbonne on Kotchar's "new painting". The ,,Les Pentures dans l`espace de Kotchar" ("Kotchar's Painting in Space") one-man show opens in "Van Leer" Gallery (November 17th through 30th). The 15 works presented were new plastic and artistic means of expression which involved time as an additional fourth dimension. The author of the catalogue was Valdemar George. In December Kotchar's wife, Varteni and daughter died with tuberculosis. 1929 In the international exhibition, ,,Panorama de L`art contemporain,, ("Panorama of Contemporary Art") organized in the halls of the ,,BONAPART" Publishers, Kotchar presents works of "painting in space" (January 17th through February 16th). Among the participants of the exhibition were Braque, Chagal, Delone, Liursa, Matisse, Miraux, Picabia, Picasso, Survage, Utrillaux , Vlamink, and others. Kotchar meets Leonse Rosenberg, the well-known patron and connoisseur of modern art, who becomes a fan of Kotchar's art.

1930 With Melineh In January Kotchar marries Melineh Ohanian. Participates in the exhibition, "Confrontation", organized by the "REGAIN" (Modern Art Trends Information and Communications Centre) at the "Fenêtre ouverte" Gallery (February 14th through 28th). The exhibition, "Pictures by Fernand Leger, Gino Severini, Jean Metzinger, Jean Viollier also Paintings in Space by Kotchar" opens in "The Leicester Galleries" in London (April through May). 1932 Participates in the exhibition, "Exposition d`oeuvres Cubites, Surrealistes et Abstraites" ("Cubist, Surrealistic and Abstract Works") in Leonse Rosenberg's Gallery (19, Rue de La Baume, Paris ), presenting also works by Braque, Metzenge, de Cirico, Gries, Picabia, Kzaki, Leger, Earnst, Herbin and others (April 25th through May 25th). 1934 The one-man show, "Kotchar - Peinures, Sculptures, Dessingns" ("Kotchar: Paintings, Sculptures and Drawings" opens in "Galerie Vignon". The show was echoed by Moris Reynal, Gotier and others (January 29th through February 6th). 1935 Participates in the exhibition, "Les Artistes Musicalistes" ("Music-oriented Artists"): Budapest - May-June, Brno - July-August, Prague - September 8th through 25th. Organiser, Henry Valencie. The "ADDRESS" was published in July, where Kotchar presents his ideas on "painting in space" for the first time. Participates with one work, "Painting in Space", in the exhibition "Le 1-ere Salon de l'Art Mural" where only "models related to monumental art" were presented. 1936 In Yerevan, 1936 Signs the "Manifest of Dimensionism" the ideas of which had already been expressed in his works of the Paris period. The Manifesto was signed by Harp, Calder, Miraux, Delone. Ducan, Candinsky, Picabia and others. In May, at the threshold of glory, and to the surprise of many, repatriates to the Country of the Soviets, without the least doubt that he is leaving Paris and Melineh for good. After being away for fourteen years, he returns to Tbilisi and meets his mother, sisters and friends. His application on joining Georgia's Union of Artists was turned down. In autumn Kotchar moves to Yerevan. 1937 Becomes a member of the Artists Union of Armenia. Participates periodically in republic and all-Union exhibitions. On October 2nd an article, "Let's Throw the Enemies of the People out of the Front of Fine Arts" was published: Kotchar was being accused of "anti-Soviet propaganda and anti-revolutionary activities". 1938 - 1939 In Moscow, participates in the Ten-days Festival of Armenian Culture. Meets his friend, the architect Karo Halabian who has always supported Kotchar protecting him from various groundless slanders.

Within the framework of the celebrations of the thousandth anniversary of "David of Sassoun", the Armenian national epic, Kotchar creates the plaster version of the equestrian monument "David of Sassoun" in an extremely short period of time - in 18 days - which was destroyed barbarously during the days following his arrest in 1941. Does illustrations to the Leningrad academy edition of the epic. 1940 The sketch for the statue to Nizami Gyanjiev wins the second prize in the All-Union competition. 1941 - 1943 He was arrested on June 22nd. Was freed in August 1943, due to the interference of his friends from Nersissian School, Karo Halabian and Anastas Mikoian. 1944 - 1945 Teaches painting and drawing at Yerevan K. Marx Polytechnic Institute Architecture Department. Wins the first prize for the portrait in drawing of Komitas (no first prize was awarded). Marries Manik Mkrtchian. 1946 Manik Mkrtchian Wins the first prize for the portrait in drawing of Komitas (no first prize was awarded). Marries Manik Mkrtchian. 1947-1948 Made stage decorations for H. Paronian State Musical Comedy Theatre. 1948 Receives a copyright for the invention of a new, cold method of making wax paints. The Council of Ministers of the Armenian SSR passes a decision to organize production of wax paints after Kotchar's method. 1953 "The Eagle of Zvartnotz", a landmark and memorial monument (bronze), was placed on the road to the Zvartnotz Temple. Architecture, Rafael Israelian. 1955 In Paris broad activities evolve at the initiative of Sonya Delone, Melineh Kotchar, and Valdemar George aimed at organizing a one-man show of Kotchar's works which were in Paris and which were created in Armenia. For this purpose a number of prominent figures of French culture sign a petition. The exhibition opened in 1966, without Kotchar being present and without the pieces of the post-Paris period). 1956 By the Decree of the Supreme Council of the Armenian SSR Ervand Kotchar was awarded the title of an Honoured Artist of the Republic of Armenia. During the days of the Second Ten-day Festival of Armenian Art and Literature in Moscow participates in the exhibition of Armenian fine arts. 1959 Near the David of Sassoun The equestrian monument, "David of Sassoun" (wrought copper) was placed in the Yerevan Railway Station Square. Architect, Michael Mazmanian. 1960 - 1964 Creates masterpieces, the painting "Disasters of War", and the series of works of painting in space of the Yerevan period. 1963 National Museum of Modern Art-Pompidou Centre in Paris acquires one of Kotchar's works of "Painting in the Space" (1934). 1965 After a thirty-year break the one-man show of Kotchar opens in Fatherland, in Yerevan, (March 14th). By the Decree of the Supreme Council of the Armenian SSR E. Kotchar was awarded the title of a People's Artist of the Armenian SSR. 1966 The one-man show, "Kotchar et la peinture dans l`espace", opened at the "Percier" Gallery in Paris. The catalogue, "Kotchar and Painting in Space" by Valdemar George was published (February". 1967 He is awarded the State Prize of the ASSR. 1969 The statue to Komitas (wrought coppper) was placed in the central square in Etchmiadzin. Having given up hope to meet Kotchar, Melineh commits suicide in Paris. 1970 Participates in the exhibition, "Armenian Culture from Urartu up to the Present Day", opened in Louvre. 1971 His second one-man show opens in Yerevan (June-July). By the Decree of the USSR Supreme Council the Y. Kotchar was awarded the Order (Decoration) of the Red Banner of Labour. 1972 The album, "Ervand Kotchar" by Henrik Igityan comes out. The sculpture, "The Muse of Cybernetics" (wrought copper), was placed in the yard of the Yerevan Computers Research Institute. Architect, Ervand Kotchar. 1973 An one-man show opens in the Museum of Eastern Peoples in Moscow (December 15th through February 18th). 1974 Tretyakov Gallery and the Russian Museum obtain paintings and drawings. One-man shows open in Baku (April) and Tbilisi (June). 1975 Near the Vartan Mamikonian The equestrian monument, "Vartan Mamikonian" (wrought copper), was placed in Yerevan. Architect, Stepan Kyurkchian. 1976 By the Decree of the USSR Supreme Council Kotchar was awarded the title of a People's Artist of the Soviet Union. 1976 - 1977 Participates in the exhibition, " Self-portrait in Russian And Soviet Art in 1930-1950" (Moscow, a number of cities of the Soviet Union, Bulgaria, Poland and Hungary). 1978 An one-man show of Kotchar's graphic works opens in Yerevan (March 10 through April 12). 1979 Dies on January 22nd in Yerevan. 1980 An exhibition of Kotchar's works opens in the Artists' House of Armenia (June 6th through July 8th). The ASSR Institute of Arts of the Academy of Sciences organizes a scientific session dedicated to Kotchar's 80th birthday anniversary (June 11th). 1984 Kochar with Manik and Lala "Ervand Kotchar" Museum opens in Yerevan on June 22nd. Manik Mkrtchian dies on September 17th. 1990 An exhibition dedicated to Kotchar's 90th birthday anniversary opens in Paris. Organizers, K. Pasmajian Gallery, Ervand Kotchar Gallery (May 18th through September 9th). The ASSR Institute of Arts of the Academy of Sciences organizes a scientific session dedicated to Kotchar's 90th birthday anniversary (May 25th).

June 23 - September 30 1990 the exhibition in Musee' des Beaux - Arts (Fine Arts Museum) in Kale, France.

December 13 1990 - February 2 1991 the exhibition organized by Fondacio Joun Miro; Olimpiada Culturel (Juan Miro Foundation) in Barcelona; 1997

UNESCO passes a decision to celebrate Kotchar's 100th jubilee under its high protection, putting his name on the list of "Outstanding Dates". 1998 November 24 1998 - February 7 1999 the exhibition "Forjar el Espacio" organized by Centro Atlantico de Arte Moderno hall in the Major Canary Islands; 1999

March 3 - May 30 1999 IVAM Centre Julio Gonzalez (Julio Gonzalez Centre) in Valencia


Kotchar's "Painting in Space" kept at Paris Pompidou Centre

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