imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Subscribe Calendar Publish RSS
Tell the NSA: StopWatching.US

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 - json version - email this article - view hidden posts - tags and related articles
link:

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



Freenet/Sone comments box:

This is a comment system called babcom, which is a decentralized, anonymous, encrypted, troll-resistant, comment system that runs atop Freenet. These comments are not stored on this IMC server - they exist in the Freenet cloud, and you must be running Freenet and Sone to see the comments. Install Freenet and try it out.

Use Node:

⚙ Babcom is trying to load the comments ⚙

This textbox will disappear when the comments have been loaded.

If the box below shows an error-page, you need to install Freenet with the Sone-Plugin or set the node-path to your freenet node and click the Reload Comments button (or return).

If you see something like Invalid key: java.net.MalformedURLException: There is no @ in that URI! (Sone/search.html), you need to setup Sone and the Web of Trust

If you had Javascript enabled, you would see comments for this page instead of the Sone page of the sites author.

Note: To make a comment which isn’t a reply visible to others here, include the red link below somewhere in the comment text.

Add this link to the comment:

Local News

New ID Verification Feature on this Site O21 1:06AM

Sierra Club endorses activists for Water Board O20 2:02PM

INDY has been hijacked or sold? to commentators ? O17 9:58AM

Columbus Day Protest, Downtown L.A. O14 4:44PM

Demonstration in Los Angeles: In Solidarity with Kobani O11 12:23PM

Voters Rally Against Proposition 1 Outside the Beverly Hills Mansion of Water Barons O03 5:35AM

The Uber-fication of the Democratic Party O01 2:16AM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

US Army Withheld Promise From Germany Not To Weaponize Ebola Samples O22 2:18PM

Beware The Twilight O21 3:18PM

Turkey Murders Press TV Reporter Serena Shim O21 12:57PM

Stop Circus Animal Suffering – Protestors Urge Audiences to Shun the Wild Animal Circus O21 12:13PM

Ohio State Treasurer Josh Mandel Invested 47 Million In Israel Bonds Without Permission of O21 6:40AM

Fatal encounter: Jennifer Laude meets US Marine Corps O21 4:32AM

Kiev War Crimes O21 3:51AM

S&P 500 Companies Spend 95% of Profits on Buybacks and Payouts O20 6:09PM

Sahaja Samadhi Avastha O20 4:50PM

Sino/Russian Alliance Challenges West O20 1:54PM

Stop Circus Animal Suffering – Protestors Urge Audiences to Shun the Wild Animal Circus O20 12:30PM

Whitewashing Kiev Mass Murder O20 9:36AM

Chief Justice Nathan Hecht, Texecutioner, Is Facing The Voters O20 9:25AM

A Planner Of Saddam Hussein's Illegal Execution Running For North Carolina Supreme Court O20 8:17AM

No Redistribution Without the Social State O20 4:37AM

Ukrainian-Style Democracy O20 3:42AM

L'humain et les artilects O20 2:19AM

Dead-End US/Russian Relations O19 1:21PM

Killers, torturers and the new recommended registry for them O19 12:54PM

The Mysterious Plane Crashes Of Opponents Of Unregulated Capitalism & Republic Candidates O19 11:14AM

We're All Palestinians O19 9:01AM

Russia: On the Right Side of History O19 4:20AM

Shoot the Messenger: Blame the Victim O18 3:19PM

Israel's Bloodstained Hands O18 1:25PM

Jury draft can cause military draft O18 11:05AM

Reinvented Scoundrel Media History O18 9:55AM

ich bins der panitz walter timo O18 7:26AM

Stanley L. Cohen: Guilty of Doing His Job Honorably O18 5:38AM

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