|Ara Oshagan's work revolves around the themes of identity, community and aftermath.
Since 1995, he has been photographing survivors of the Armenian Genocide, a project
that includes oral history and is called The Genocide Project. Working with photographer
Levon Parian and a team of oral historians, this work was exhibited at the Downey
Museum of Art in 1999 and attracted national attention, being the main feature in an NPR
Morning Edition story.
Oshagan has also been photographing extensively in Nagorno-Karabagh for a book
project with his father, well-known author, Vahe Oshagan. Featured in Photo District
News, the book will be published by Edition Paranthese in France. His work from
Karabagh also took third place in the prestigious Visions 2001 National Photographic
Project Competition sponsored by the Santa Fe Center for the Visual Arts.
Working with the USC Center for Religion and Civic Culture, Oshagan received a
California Council on the Humanities Major Grant in 2001 to photograph the Armenian
experience of Los Angeles. This work, called Traces of Identity, was exhibited at the LA
Municipal Art Gallery at Barnsdall Park from September to December 2004 and is
currently on view at the Downey Museum of Art.
Oshagan has also been working in collaboration with Leslie Neale of Chance Films on a
project to document high-risk juvenile offenders being tried as adults in California.
Oshagan's work is in the permanent collection of the SouthEast Museum of Photography
in Daytona Beach, Florida, the Downey Musuem of Art in Downey, California and the
Museum of Contemporary Art in Yerevan, Armenia.