ARTAVAZD PELESHYAN IN THE CONTEXT OF ARMENIAN DOCUMENTARY CINEMA – 2019-1

Summary

Artur T. Vardikyan

Key words – Artavazd Peleshyan, Hamo Beknazaryan, Ara Vahuni, Harutyun Khachatryan, traditional documentary cinema, poetic cinema, concreteness of film, Karabakh movement, film reels, poetical and poetic elements.

Filmmaker Artavazd Peleshyan is often associated with documentary cinema. However a documentary director’s main goal is to capture the fact of reality on camera. For Peleshyan, however, the fact is merely a means of creating his own poetic reality, where all in-frame objects lose their concreteness and strive to generalizations. The reason for this false association is simply that, just like documentarists, Peleshyan uses unstaged reality as the “building material” for his films. Nonetheless, it has to be said that Peleshyan’s work has greatly influenced the generations of Armenian filmmakers that followed. While keeping the attributes of Soviet documentary film, directors Ara Vahuni and Ruben Gevorgyants added new poetic elements to their films. Directors of later generation, such as Grigor Harutyunyan, Harutyun Khachatryan and Garegin Zakoyan, who were influenced by Peleshyan in one way or an other, did not just use poetic elements, but made structurally poetic films. Thus after Peleshyan started his work Armenian cinematography discovered its new course and realized itself in basically all genres of poetic film.

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