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Special Event, Talk / Lecture

Exhibition Tour & Janyak Workshop

April 7, 2024 | 2:00PM - 5:30PM



2–3 pm, Joss Gallery

Curator Gassia Armenian discusses the history of Janyak (Ժանյակ) or Armenian needle lace in the U.S. A portable and enduring art form passed from mother to daughter, it has connected generations both in their homeland and in the diaspora, transmitting cultural heritage and values.

3:30–5:30 pm, Deutsch Seminar Room

Textile artist and professor Sofi Khachmanyan will lead a hands-on workshop on janyak technique that uses only the needle and thread. Knot after knot, loop after loop, Armenian janyak (Ժանյակ) or needle lace has been, for centuries, a precious link for Armenians across the world.

Note: Workshop is first come, first serve basis for up to 20 people. Once we reach max capacity, we welcome curious minds to watch the process.

Light refreshments will be served in the courtyard. This program celebrates the closing of the Fowler exhibition Janyak: Armenian Art of Knots and Loops

Gassia Armenian is a curatorial and research associate at the Fowler Museum at UCLA, where she conducts collections research and facilitates curatorial and scholarly endeavors. She also liaises with domestic and international institutions, private collectors, and lenders to the Fowler, and manages various aspects of planning and organizing the museum’s exhibitions and publications. Over the past 25 years, Armenian has helped to mount many exhibitions at the Fowler. Prior to that, she served as a consultant/project coordinator for the U.S. Agency for International Development for Junior Achievement of Armenia, developing and implementing civics education training programs and teaching methodologies.

Sofi Khachmanyan is a fashion professor at Santa Monica City College, textile specialist, and researcher. Khachmanyan learned lace-making in the Art-Technical College in Yerevan, Armenia. A master artist-embroiderer, she has participated in a variety of local and international exhibitions. Since moving to America in 1988, she has continued making lace, tapestries, and other types of textiles. Her education in the U.S. was in fashion design and textiles.

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