Akop Gurdjan (1881-1948)
Akop Gurdjan (also Hakob Gyurjyan) was born in Shusha (Nagorno Karabakh).
In 1907-1910 he studied at Paris Julian Academy and also worked in the atelier of Rodin.
Beginning in 1908 he participated in the exhibitions held by Paris Fine Arts National Association.
Between 1914-1921 he worked in Moscow (Vladimir Lenin being present at the unveiling of a monument created by Akop Gurdjan). From 1921 onwards he lived in Paris again and was granted French citizenship.
Being a prolific sculptor, he covered a wide range of subjects, but became most known for creating more than 300 portrait busts (Sergei Rachmaninoff, Ludwig van Beethoven)
His works have been exhibited in Tokyo, Oslo, Moscow and many other cities. During his lifetime he had individual exhibitions in New York and Paris.
In 1948 he died in Paris at the age of 67 years.
As stated in Gurdjan’s will, in 1958 his widow bequeathed 400 works and his archives to Yeravan, the capital city of Armenia.
In 1959 a retrospective exhibition was organized at the State Gallery of Armenia (now the National Gallery of Armenia).
The Centre Pompidou in Paris holds a work by Akop Gurdjan in its collection.