Bio: Mikayel Harutyunyan was born on November 2,.1997 in Yerevan, Armenia. He began painting at the age of 10. In 2018 Mikayel took part in “BP Portrait Award-2019”, one of the most famous portrait competitions in the world organized by the National Portrait Gallery in London. He was the youngest participant among 2538 painters from almost 90 countries.
In 2018, Mikael won the “Prize of the Critic” at Arte Salerno in Salerno, Italy.
He received the “Tekeyan” award for the “Armenia” canvas in 2017.
In 2016 and 2017, he took first place in the CIS at the 11th and 12th International Youth Delphic Games in St. Petersburg and Yekaterinburg respectively.
In 2014 in Moscow, he participated in the 9th Jewish International Competition entitled “The Holocaust. Reminder and warning ” and he was awarded the first prize. In 2021 He received first prize in the Catholic Art Institute Sacred Art Prize competition. In 2022 He placed third in the Portrait Society of America's Future Generation competition for artists aged 18-25.
He has held individual exhibitions at Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, at Albert and Tov Boyadzian Gallery of the Yerevan State Academy of Fine Arts, at the small hall of the Arno Babajanian Philharmonic Orchestra, and at The Armenian Union of Architects.
You can find Harutyunyan’s paintings at The Church of the Holy Sepulcher, Jerusalem, the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, Komitas Museum-Institute(Yerevan), San Lazaro Island (Venice, Italy), Israeli Knesset (Jerusalem), Boris Yeltsin Presidential Library Fund (St. Petersburg), The Armenian Museum of Moscow.
Tell us about your life as an artist.
I have loved the spiritual world since I was young. Art helped me to love the spiritual more, and the spiritual helped me to love art more. These two are in harmony in me. I don't remember why, but my first paintings were of biblical themes.
How does your faith plays a role in your work?
It is an honor and joy to paint for the glory of God. This grace with which we artists create is the Lord's gift to us and it is fitting we use this grace for his glory. It has been a great blessing that I am able to do so through commissions including an upcoming one creating a series of paintings for a 19th century church, which will be dedicated to the life of Christ.
Additionally, I have participated in international competitions which proved to be very successful for my career. I won the first prize in the Catholic Art Institute's 2021 Sacred Art Prize. The prize money was very helpful but moreover, the victory was covered repeatedly in Armenia in the press, on social media and I received recognition which helped my career. I consider participation in this competition and acquaintance with the Catholic Art Institute was very important for me.
In addition to sacred art, I also paint portraits and non religious paintings. I entered and received third place in the Portrait Society of America's international competition in the category of Future Generation Artists. I also became a member of the Portrait Society.
I hope, by the will of God, that I may continue to serve him with my artistic gifts and have plans for future paintings which I hope will become a reality.
Mikayel pictured with his crucifixion painting in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jerusalem
Mikayel's crucifixion painting in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, Jerusalem