Since 1984 I have been combining my interest in photography and painting by heavily painting the surface of my photographs with oil paint. The photographic surface acts as an underpainting from which I extract a new narrative context. Often very little remains recognizably photographic, revealing a new integration of the two mediums.
My painting is an intuitive and interactive process in which I am continually responding both visually and emotionally to the photographic images that I am using, alternately applying and wiping away the oil paint. Recurring images are associated with my Armenian ancestry, including the Armenian Genocide of 1915 when one and a half million Armenians were massacred, and the survivors driven from their homeland by the Ottoman Turks.
I received my Fine Arts degree in Photography from the University of Oregon in 1984 and since that time have continually exhibited my work at museums and galleries around the country. In 1992 and again in 2000 I was awarded a Visual Artists Fellowship from the Oregon Arts Commission. I currently live in Eugene, Oregon with my husband and 14 year old son, and work in my studio at home and my darkroom in nearby Springfield.