WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Metropolitan Museum of Art President and CEO Daniel H. Weiss, The Met’s “Armenia!” exhibit curator Dr. Helen Evans, and “Armenia!” exhibit catalogue contributor Dr. Rachel Goshgarian, along with Armenia’s newly appointed Ambassador to the United States, the Honorable Varuzhan Nersesyan will be on hand for a special luncheon event hosted by the Armenian Assembly of America (Assembly) on December 14th at The Met in New York City.
“This is going to be a fantastic event. I am honored that the President and CEO of the Metropolitan Museum of Art along with Dr. Helen Evans, Dr Rachel Goshgarian, and Armenia’s Ambassador to the United States, Varuzhan Nersesyan can join us,” Armenian Assembly Board Member Alex Karapetian said.
The luncheon will be followed by a tour of the “Armenia!” exhibition by Dr. Goshgarian. The exhibit features more than 140 objects, including opulent gilded reliquaries, richly illuminated manuscripts, rare textiles, cross stones (khachkars), precious liturgical furnishings, church models, and printed books – most of which will be on view in the United States for the first time. It explores the arts and culture of the Armenians from their conversion to Christianity in the early 4th century through their leading role on international trade routes in the 17th century.
Mr. Weiss was appointed President of The Met in March 2015, and became CEO as well in June 2017. Previously, he joined the art history faculty at Johns Hopkins, where he became a full professor, chair of the department, and eventually dean of the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences. From 2005 to 2013, he served as President and Professor of Art History at Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, and in 2013, he became president of Haverford College.
In addition to the “Armenia!” exhibit, Dr. Helen Evans co-curated “The Glory of Byzantium” exhibition at The Met, as well as the Morgan Library’s exhibition, “Treasures In Heaven: Armenian Illuminated Manuscripts From American Collections.” She has taught, lectured, and published widely on Armenian art and is in her fourth term as the Nikit and Eleanora Ordjanian Visiting Professor at Columbia University, teaching “Origins of Armenian Art: Creating An Identity.”
In The Met’s “Armenia!” exhibit catalogue, Dr. Goshgarian contributed to the sections on “Greater Armenia and the Medieval World” and “Armenian Global Connections in the Early Modern Period.” She is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of History at Lafayette College in Easton, PA, and is co-author of the first Armenian grammar book published in Turkey in over 100 years.
Ambassador Nersesyan was recently appointed as Ambassador of Armenia to the United States. Previously, he held the positions of Assistant to the Prime Minister of Armenia and Assistant to the President of Armenia (responsible for international affairs and matters related to the National Security Council). In March 2016, he was awarded the Medal of “Mkhitar Gosh” for outstanding state and social-political activities, as well as for significant services in the spheres of diplomacy, law and political science.
Representing the cultural heritage of Armenia, most of the works come from major Armenian collections: the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin; the Matenadaran (Ancient Manuscripts); the National History Museum in the Republic of Armenia; the Catholicosate of the Great House of Cilicia in Lebanon; the Brotherhood of St. James in Jerusalem; the Mekhitarist Congregation of San Lazzaro degli Armeni in Venice; the Calouste Gulbenkian Museum in Lisbon; the Diocese of the Armenian Church (Eastern) in New York; the Armenian Museum of America in Boston; and the Alex and Marie Manoogian Museum in Michigan.
Established in 1972, the Armenian Assembly of America is the largest Washington-based nationwide organization promoting public understanding and awareness of Armenian issues. The Assembly is a non-partisan, 501(c)(3) tax-exempt membership organization.