Zareh began to draw at a very young age. As a child, he use to draw animals, portraits and other subjects. Drawing or painting has always been an outlet that makes him feel alive. Art is a temple that he has created in which his soul dances freely, his imagination is welcomed and his desires and emotions are expressed. The movements of his hand when he draws, help him to release and transform his energy and his thoughts. These through pencils, paints and media, in turn, transform and become images of his artwork. Some artwork contours are blended, smudged and multiplied, creating a feeling of motion and a relationship with the surrounding.
Born in Aleppo, Syria, in 1956, he moved with his family to Lebanon in 1963. During the Lebanese Civil War of the 1970s, Zareh studied fine art at Beirut’s Al Kaslik University. The atrocities of the war, followed by the breakdown of tolerance and civility between quarreling communities, had a profound effect on the sensitive young artist. What he witnessed in those years would start to define the core concerns and attributes of his art, expressed at turns through sorrow, apprehension, and explosive outrage at manifestations of social and political injustice.
After moving to the United States in 1983, Zareh dedicated himself to create his artwork with much of his output designed to raise public awareness of universal issues such as environmental degradation, globalism and its dire consequences for disenfranchised societies, and human-rights violations. The memories and influences of the past come to life in his work. These very influences interact with his present experiences and continually change.
Many of Zareh’s critically acclaimed exhibitions, such as “The Red Trees of the Armenian Genocide” and “Marry the Priest,” have been featured in the U.S. media, including the Los Angeles Times, La Opinion, KTLA, and others. Some projects were performance pieces, which were publicly displayed on the streets of Greater Los Angeles area.
“Existence is a collective experience. The feeling of existence is a sense of being different. Differences engender reaction and reaction leads to change. Life is the change. Changes bring awareness of time and movement. Differences enable us to compare and measure. Measure and proportion are the logic of mind. Completion and perfection do not exist. Reality is not absolute, it is relative. Art is an expression relative to environment and period.” Zareh also enjoys exploring the commonality and the differences of living things. He likes to combine, change and transform them into art. “Sometimes, simplified organic forms, dots, an outline and geometric forms intricately accompany the realistic execution of my art.”
Zareh’s artwork is an act in which time and transformation seek existence in movement, change, sequence, repetition, relationship and resemblance. His work conveys feelings, imagination, communication, struggle, relief and his marks of existence. “My art on canvas has evolved and transcended to an outlet using our ever growing media, the issues of social injustice compelled me to utilize my expression of art as a voice to the multitude.” added him.
Published on Dec 30, 2013