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Volkmar Gantzhorn was a German art historian and author. The paragraph he wrote below for the introduction of his 1991 seminal book “The Christian Oriental Carpet” inspired me to begin my 20 year journey to repatriate our valuable historical artifacts.


As cult objects of Christian oriental churches, carpets, along with other textiles, constitute what may well be the most important Armenian contribution to the history of world art. My book attempts to make good the injustice done to a people who, in the course of their more than two thousand year history, have suffered more than any other as a result of their geographic location between the Orient and the Occident. The Armenians have countless times been divided, exploited, robbed, exiled, deported, enslaved, murdered and mistreated. They have been robbed of their art, the authorship for which has been attributed to the conquerors during the years which followed, either due to ignorance of the facts involved, or to the manipulation of these facts. This unique collection of patterns and designs, characteristics of oriental carpets, is a part of the Armenian heritage and identity, and it should now be understood as such.”

                                                                     — Volkmar Gantzhorn


Left: Volkmar Gantzhorn receives the Movses Khorenatsi Medal in Armenia in 2013 for his research on Oriental Carpets.

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