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Cafesjian Museum of Art

Museums & Cultural Sights
Tamanyan Street
Armenia / Yerevan / Kentron
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Vahagn Marabyan
Director
+374-10-56-85-50
Visitor Center: +374-10-56-72-62 / Office: +374-10-54-19-32; 54-19-34
Address mail

Cafesjian Center for the Arts :
Etablished : 17 November 2009 / Collection size : more than 5,000 / Visitors : more than 1 million

The Cafesjian Center for the Arts is dedicated to bringing the best of contemporary art to Armenia and presenting the best of Armenian culture to the world. Inspired by the vision of its founder, Gerard L. Cafesjian, the Center offers a wide variety of exhibitions, derived from the Gerard L. Cafesjian Collection of contemporary art. Having celebrated its grand opening in November 2009, CCA continues to exhibit unique works of modern art and offers a diverse program of lectures, films, concerts, and numerous educational initiatives for adults and children. Over one million people have visited the Center annually since its opening.


Officially, Cafesjian Center for the Arts (CCA, Armenian: Գաֆեսճյան արվեստի կենտրոն (Gafesčyan arvesti kentron), also known as the Cafesjian Museum Foundation) is an art museum in Yerevan, Armenia. It is located at the central Kentron District, in and around the Yerevan Cascade which is a complex of massive staircase with fountains, ascending up from the Tamanyan Street gardens and pedestrian zone.

Inspired by the vision of its founder, Gerard L. Cafesjian, the museum offers a wide variety of exhibitions, derived from the Gerard L. Cafesjian collection of contemporary art. Opened in November 2009, besides the exhibition of unique works of modern art, the museum offers a diverse program of lectures, films, concerts, and numerous educational initiatives for adults and children. Over one million people have visited the Center annually since its opening.

The museum is directed and run and the Cafesjian Museum Foundation.


History


View from a garden terrace of the Cafesjian Museum of Art at the Cascade

The Cafesjian Museum Foundation was established in April 2002 in Yerevan under the auspices of the Government of the Republic of Armenia and the Cafesjian Museum Foundation of America. The Armenian government provided the Foundation with the half-constructed Yerevan Cascade complex along with the surrounding area.

The construction of the Cafesjian Museum was launched in April 2005 and was expected to be completed in April 2008.[1] However, with a slight delay, the grand opening of the museum took place on 17 November 2009. The opening ceremony was attended by the Armenian president Serzh Sargsyan, minister of culture Hasmik Poghosyan, minister of diaspora Hranush Hakobyan, as well as representatives of diplomatic missions in Armenia, various artists and political figures.[2]

The Cafesjian Museum Foundation invested over 35 million dollars to complete the reconstruction of the Cascade.

Architecture


General view of the Cafesjian Centre

The museum is situated within the cascade complex of Yerevan and along the adjacent pedestrian zone and gardens at the entrance to the cascade from the Tamanyan Street. The beginning of the construction of the cascade dates back to 1971, designed by architects Jim Torosyan, Aslan Mkhitaryan, Sargis Gurzadyan. The first phase of the plan was completed in 1980. The cascade is a complex massive staircase on both sides with fountains in between, ascending up from the Tamanyan Street gardens and pedestrian zone. Having five levels, the number of the stairs is 572, ascending along 302 meters upwards.

However, only between 2002 and 2009 the complex was developed and the museum was opened through the Cafesjian Family Foundation.

The art center project was designed by the New York-based David Hotson Architects

The museum is considered one of the most ambitious works of contemporary architecture undertaken in any of the former republics of the Soviet Union."[citation needed] The New York Times described it as "a mad work of architectural megalomania and architectural recovery, (...) one of the strangest and most spectacular museum buildings to open in ages."

Structure


The Cafesjian Sculpture Garden


The museum consists of the 2 separate sections: the external "Cafesjian Sculpture Garden", and the internal "Cafesjian Art Galleries".

  • The Cafesjian Sculpture Garden is the front gardens of the cascade where many sculptures are exhibited. Sculptures are also exhibited in the garden terrace along the massive steps and fountains ascending up from the Tamanyan street gardens. With unobstructed walkways, long vistas, and formal garden areas, it has been specially designed to provide a modern setting for large-scale sculpture by many internationally recognized figures.
  • The "Cafesjian Art Galleries" including the Gallery One, Khanjyan Gallery, Eagle Gallery, Sasuntsi Davit Garden Gallery, Star Landing and the Special Events Auditorium, located underneath the exterior staircase and fountains. The galleries are home to a massive collection of glass artwork exhibited in several galleries and sections, including permanent shows or temporary exhibitions.


Collection


Fernando Botero, Mujer Fumando un Cigarrillo (Woman Smoking a Cigarette), 1987 bronze, dark brown patina

The majority of the museum's collection are derived from the private collection of the founder Gerard L. Cafesjian. With more than 5,000 works, the centre exhibits one of the most comprehensive glass collections in the world, particularly the works of the Czech couple Stanislav Libenský and Jaroslava Brychtová, whose collaborative work revolutionized the use of glass as an artistic medium. Other important glass artists in the collection include Dale Chihuly, Bohumil Elias, Pavel Hlava, Jaromír Rybák, Ivana Šrámková, Bertil Vallien, Lino Tagliapietra, Mark Peiser, and Hiroshi Yamano.

The collection also has substantial holdings in drawing, painting and sculpture by many influential artists including Fernando Botero, Arshile Gorky, Jennifer Bartlett, Lynn Chadwick, Barry Flanagan, Jaume Plensa, and François-Xavier Lalanne.

Collection

The majority of exhibitions presented by the Cafesjian Center for the Arts are derived from the private collection of its main benefactor, Mr. Gerard L. Cafesjian. This collection of more than 5,000 works includes one of the most comprehensive glass collections in the world. 

It is particularly rich in the work of the Czech couple Stanislav Libenský and Jaroslava Brychtová, whose collaborative work revolutionized the use of glass as an artistic medium. Other important glass artists in the collection include Dale Chihuly, Bohumil Elias, Pavel Hlava, Jaromír Rybák, Ivana Šrámková, Bertil Vallien, Lino Tagliapietra, Mark Peiser, and Hiroshi Yamano. The collection also has substantial holdings in drawing, painting and sculpture by such influential artists as Fernando Botero, Arshile Gorky, Jennifer Bartlett, Lynn Chadwick, Barry Flanagan, Jaume Plensa and François-Xavier Lalanne. 

Additional Information

Facilities

Wifi free
Airport Shuttle
Fitness Center
Pool
Spa
Meeting Facility
Room Service
Ironing Service
No Smoking Room
Family rooms
Air conditionning
Bath
Soundproofing
Kitchen/Kitchenette
Facility Disabled Guests
Pet Friendly
Restaurant
Parking
Night Service
Terrace

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