imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Subscribe Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

CopWatch LA

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List





IMC Network: www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech
printable version - js reader version - email this article - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Cathedral on Verge of Collapse

by Lucine Kasbarian Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013 at 9:18 PM

The Campaign to Save Mren: An Interview with Dr. Christina Maranci

Cathedral on Verge o...
img_1125.jpeg, image/jpeg, 320x214

Dr. Christina Maranci, Arthur H. Dadian and Ara T. Oztemel Associate Professor of Armenian Art and Architecture at Tufts University in Medford, Mass., has issued a call to save the 7th century Mren Cathedral of Western Armenia, located in the Kars region of present-day Turkey. Prof. Maranci’s areas of expertise include Byzantine art and architecture, and the art and architecture of the Transcaucasus—principally Armenia. She is considered one of the world’s authorities on the Mren Cathedral.

According to Dr. Maranci, “the cathedral of Mren is now in danger of collapse. Constructed circa 638 AD, Mren is a masterpiece of world art and a product of the ‘Golden Age’ of Armenian architecture. Bearing an inscription naming the Roman emperor Heraclius, and a unique sculpted relief image of Heraclius returning Christendom’s greatest relic-the True Cross—to Jerusalem, Mren preserves precious material evidence for one of the most dramatic and yet poorly documented moments in history.

It is also the largest domed basilica surviving from the region, and a key example of the architectural achievements of the seventh century.”


Dr. Maranci stresses that Mren may not be standing much longer. “Photographs from the 1990s to the first decade of the 21st century show the progressive collapse of the south façade. Now the entire south aisle lies in rubble on the ground, severely compromising the domed superstructure of the monument and opening the interior and its wall paintings to the elements,” she says. “The prospect of stabilizing what is left is at present doubtful, however, because of Mren’s position within a military zone in Eastern Turkey (Kars province) next to the closed Armenian-Turkish border. Visiting the site is forbidden.”


Dr. Maranci is campaigning to raise awareness about Mren’s precarious condition. “Mren has stood for over a millennium, bearing world history on its walls,” she says. Its collapse would represent a tragic loss to human knowledge.”

Following is an interview with Dr. Maranci.

Lucine Kasbarian: For years, scholars and travelers have been unable to obtain official permission to visit this site. When was the last time that architectural experts had access to Mren?

Christina Maranci: The last time anyone was able to do substantial scientific work there was in the 1960s when Nicole and Jean-Michel Thierry visited multiple times. I have never been there although I have tried to get permission.

LK: Observers say that Mren Cathedral seems to rival in size the Great Cathedral of Ani, and contains bas-reliefs and remnants of frescos not unlike those at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Aghtamar. Is forbidden access the reason why Mren is not as well known as these other two monuments?

CM: Mren and Ani are comparable in size, and Mren probably served as a local model for Ani Cathedral in its domed basilica layout and form, although Ani exhibits typical features of the 10-11th century Armenian architectural tradition. Mren has sculpted bas-reliefs on its portals and over some windows, and preserves fragments of wall painting in the eastern end. However, it bears nothing like the program of figural reliefs at Aght’amar—something that makes this church anomalous even in the Armenian tradition. Aght’amar’s wall painting is also better preserved. But the inaccessibility of Mren surely shaped its scholarly reception and public awareness about it. Toros Toramanyan, known as the father of Armenian architectural historiography, tells us that he
himself was only able to visit it for one day.

LK: The website VirtualAni.org describes Mren as being one of four structures similar in design and which were likely built around the same time, the other three being the St. Gayane Church—built between 630 and 641 AD at Etchmiadzin; the church of St. John at Bagavan—built between 632 - 639 AD and north of the Lake Van region but now destroyed; and the Odzun Basilica—probably built in the first half of the 7th century AD in the Odzun region of Armenia. How does Mren compare in historical importance to these other structures?

CM: Gayane is obviously important for its connections to the conversion to Christianity tradition and because of its connections to the Patriarch Ezr, who is thought to have built it. If the church of Bagavan were standing today, it would have been, by far, the largest domed basilica in the region. Odzun is difficult to discuss, because it has been renovated so many times. While it dates to the early medieval period, it is generally thought to have a 9th century phase and perhaps even later ones. Mren is the only one of these monuments that is linked to the broader global world via its epigraphy and sculpture. It speaks directly to the network of relationships between empire, frontier, and local Armenian nobility. There is much more to say but this is a start, one hopes.

LK: Even as Mren is on the brink of collapse, would you say that it is one of the more intact monuments still standing in the Kars/Ani region?

CM: Well, it is hard to say. So many are in danger, so many have collapsed, and so many have been lost to historical record. But it is remarkable in many ways that a 7th century monument, so isolated and in such a seismic area, has survived as well as it has-so far.

LK: How can readers of this interview help bring attention to Mren Cathedral so that scholars and restorers might conduct important inspection and preservation work and so that Mren may become a protected site?

CM: I am in the midst of contacting UNESCO and, of course, nominating the monument to the World Monuments Fund. I will also be organizing a global petition in the very near future. In the meantime, readers who would like to get involved in the campaign to save Mren Cathedral may signal their interest by contacting me at: christinaDOTmaranciATtuftsDOTedu

Photographs courtesy of Gagik Arzumanyan.
Report this post as:
Share on: Twitter, Facebook, Google+

add your comments


Mren Cathedral

by Lucine Kasbarian Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013 at 9:18 PM

Mren Cathedral...
img_1142.jpeg, image/jpeg, 320x214

Photographs courtesy of Gagik Arzumanyan.
Report this post as:
Share on: Twitter, Facebook, Google+

add your comments


Local News

Stop Circus Animal Suffering – Protestors Urge Audiences to Shun the Wild Animal Circus S07 5:57PM

Nuclear Shudown News Aufust 2016 A30 3:46PM

WIKIpedia is not what we readers Thought nor is it even current about Pacifica or KPFK A24 3:10PM

"KPFK has a $500,000 deficit “ !! Can this be true? A19 6:10AM

Nuclear Shutdown News July 2016 A01 1:36PM

A 99-page report "Election fraud" from Election Justice USA A01 4:14AM

INDY's KPFK radio program being eliminated ? too ? J10 4:57PM

Bertolt Brecht Testifies Before the House Un-American Activities Committee (1947) 2 min J02 3:04PM

Pacifica-KPFK Archives, director resignation J18 4:50PM

SAVE KPFK & PACIFICA: VOTE IN THIS CRUCIAL ELECTION! J18 3:39PM

KPFK radio elections for LSB coming Quick ! J18 1:05PM

KPFK Local Station Board Elections In-Progress J13 11:31AM

Black Lives Matter Activist Jasmine Abdullah Sentenced Three Months in Jail on Attempted Lynching Charge J09 2:08AM

Why are the Park Rangers making it even more difficult for the homeless in Los Angeles? J04 3:11PM

Bernie Sanders in Lincoln Heights M23 8:23PM

Los Angeles Sit-In to Fight Voter Suppression M18 4:28AM

War Within California's 46th CD M13 11:42AM

NPR's David Greene & Alison Aubrey along with David Ludwig Shill For Factory Farm Eggs M13 7:55AM

2016 AT&T Shareholders engaged by Communications Workers of America D9 Activists M12 11:43PM

Communications Workers of America District 9 Action at AT&T Shareholders M12 9:38PM

Voter Registration at ELAC M10 3:31PM

LA Times Fails to Cover Protest Against Clinton M07 9:15PM

Violence Against Poor In Venice A29 12:59PM

California Safe Schools Honors 11 Year Old Daniel Randall A25 2:25PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Paraphysique de la misère S30 12:37AM

Evidence that USA is run by criminals S29 10:06PM

The Shortwave Report 09/30/16 Listen Globally! S29 5:24PM

Nuclear Shutdown News September 2016 S29 2:54PM

Puerto Rico Oversight Board Holds First Meeting S29 7:54AM

Neoliberal Crisis Policy has Failed S29 4:24AM

(A-Radio) Azerbaijan: the "flower holiday" of the dictator and the imprisoned anarchists S28 12:30PM

Sylvia Opens October 13 at Odyssey Theatre; Tanna Frederick Stars S27 5:56PM

Sylvia Opens October 12 at Odyssey Theatre; Tanna Frederick Stars S27 5:44PM

International Community Rallies to Protect a Monkey Species for the First Time in 30 Years S27 4:44PM

Causes of Great Problems Faded Out in Elections S27 5:57AM

Final Shot Trucchi S27 5:04AM

Cost of not caring: THE FINANCIAL AND HUMAN TOLL FOR NEGLECTING THE MENTALLY ILL S26 9:39PM

USA's President Has Almost No Power Over fbi / cia assassins S26 9:14PM

Cuba Liberates „Miss Burqa“ From Guantanamo S26 7:10AM

Dennis Mahon and Auntie Racist S26 6:58AM

This is your country, your people, not mine S25 7:46PM

Castle Clash Tips & Tricks S25 8:45AM

Datologie S25 12:47AM

Counterintelligence Operations Against A Target Are Global S24 8:15AM

Star Wars Battlefront Death Star DLC S23 3:18PM

Paraphysique de l'aplasie S23 2:37AM

The Shortwave Report 09/23/16 Listen Globally! S22 5:34PM

Philippines: The Punisher's dirty war on drugs S21 11:50PM

Final Shot Astuce Gem Tricks S21 3:58PM

How to get rid of fleas by Robert George Tronge S21 11:52AM

SB Game Hacker is ready to work S21 10:06AM

Joanna Lumley slams CITES’ rhino horn proposal S21 9:24AM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2003 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy