Grigor Khachatryan

The interrelated theme of power and love is central in Grigor Khachatryan's oeuvre. Working in performance format he turns his own persona into the material in order to construct a worship figure that has an absolute power. The means of achieving this are the direct verbal statements as well as the indirect actions. "I’m not a man. I’m Grigor Khachatryan. You are not a man. You are Grigor Khachatryan's contemporary". "You may be in the spare of the influence of Grigor Khachatryan’s sexual rays."

Combining these and other similar sayings, calls and declarations with acts reminding the functions of power - awarding prizes (“Grigor Khachatryan“ Award), photographing the encounters with ordinary people (“Official Meetings”), “foundation” of the institute whose function is given only to the Providence (“National Center of Contingency Planning”), he puts into public circulation a figure of authority whose influence on the environment is inevitable and absolute.

The strategy (virtually the strategy of a jester) of imitating ironically the disposition and functions of power that the artist adopts while constructing the figure of his criticism can confuse us. We may think that it is the ontology of power that is the artist’s target in general. Grigor Khachatryan, in fact, turns his farce created by means of playing with the features of the traditional power against the charismatic type of power that rose in post-Soviet Armenia as a counteraction to the Soviet collectivist past that banned the individual’s political activities.


Nazareth Karoyan