NAI Hosts Book Presantation and Exhibition of “PhotAura” by Nareg Hartounian

Yerevan – Naregatsi Art Institute (NAI) hosted the presentation of the photography book “PhotAura” by the Naregatsi Art Institute founder Nareg Hartounian and the exhibition of the photos included in the album.
Nareg Hartounian’s friends and relatives came to congratulate him, many of whose photos were included in the book.
During the event, the Nova Folk Instruments Ensemble performed Saro’s aria from Armen Tigranyan’s opera “Anoush” (soloist: Arman Arakelyan), Ara Gevorgyan’s “Artsakh” and Kostandin Petrosyan’s “Hayastan” (soloist: Arman Arakelyan).
Nareg Hartounian’s children, Nova and Knar Hartounians, gave a surprise performance.
Speaking about Nareg Hartounian, his brother, Saro Hartounian, who is the sponsor of the book, said that Nareg is the beating heart and the driving force of the Naregatsi Art Institute. According to him, everyone should contribute to the preservation of the nation, Nareg Hartounian does this by preserving and spreading Armenian culture.
The “PhotAura” photography book author Nareg Hartounian started his speech by praising God, he mentioned that the book is just a way to get together with relatives. Nareg Hartounian emphasized that he inherited the love for the motherland and culture from his parents, the best manifestation of which is the Naregatsi Art Institute, which is already 19 years old.
At the end of the event, all the attendees received their own copy of the photography book signed by the author.

Nareg Hartounian

Nareg Hartounian is an Armenia-based photographer/multi-media artist with deep roots in the theatrical and visual arts. He is the founder of Naregtsi Art Institute.

Born in Beirut, Lebanon, he studied theatre arts at the American College. During these formative years, Nareg developed a deep appreciation and acute sensitivity to the magic of light, color, and motion in communicating emotion, mood and perspective on the stage.

After moving to the United States in 1988, Nareg continued to explore his creative talents through other media, including photography. Yet it was not until setting foot in his ancestral homeland of Armenia, a wonderland of early Christian monasteries and churches built with nothing but stone, space and natural light, that Nareg began to perceive the extrasensory dimensions of light and motion. Thus began his pursuit to harness these spectral energies at a single moment in time and space.

When captured through the lens of the camera, these invisible worlds within invisible worlds conjoin with objective reality to create a universe of infinite expression and interpretation.

Each image is at once representational, abstract expressionist, impressionistic, and otherworldly. These energetic auras, usually reserved for the realms of dreams, spiritual transcendences and even hallucinogenic altered states, become accessible and instantaneous to even the most grounded beholder.

This is the genesis of the Nareg Hartounian “Photaura” series. A groundbreaking art form all its own, it is a new channel by which multiple dimensions of existence and perception co-exist, converge and coalesce, weaving their way between conscious recognition and subconscious sensibility in a static image.

Commentary by the Artist

Ever since I began the Photaura leg of my creative journey, I approach the world with a more purposeful eye. Be it a human figure, a single object or a composition of elements, I have disciplined my senses to stay attuned to the subject’s inherent potential to radiate “aura” through the photographic medium. In this way, I see myself as a traditional painter in search of a subject, only with color, light, and motion as my palette and a digital camera as my brush.

Over the years, I have discovered that some images speak to my senses more clearly and fluently than do others. Some may call this basic energetic affinity; others may describe it as chemistry between energetic bodies; and spiritualists and mystics may regard it as a “third eye.” I prefer to think of it as serendipitous timing, meaning that random phenomena and divine destiny intersect in one perfect moment to capture an image for posterity.

Once the image is photographed, its true “photauric” potential is revealed. Yet this potential is never fully exhausted. There are always new veils of color to be pierced, layers of light to be peeled away, and new interpretive stories to tell through shape and movement.

As an artist and photographer, I feel privileged to open the door to these new expressions of reality and invite those seeking to connect with the multi-dimensional energetic world to join me on this grand adventure.

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