Sarkis Erganian

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Sarkis Erganian
Սարգիս Էրկանեան
Born1870 (1870)
Trebizond (Trabzon), Ottoman Empire
Died1950 (aged 79–80)

Sarkis Erganian (Armenian: Սարգիս Երկանյան; 1870 in Trabzon, Ottoman Empire - 1950 in St. Louis, Missouri) was an Ottoman Armenian painter.


Of Armenian descent,[1][2] Sarkis Erganian was born in Trebizond (now Trabzon) and went to Constantinople (now Istanbul) to study art in 1884. In 1894 he went to Paris, where he took lessons from Jean-Paul Laurens and Jean-Joseph Benjamin-Constant.[1] Subsequently, he entered the Paris Academy of Fine Arts and became the pupil of Gerome. In 1897 and 1898 he participated in the Paris Salon exhibitions.[1] He lost his father and brother in the Hamidian Massacres of 1894-1896,[1] and in 1897 he sought refuge in New York city. He worked for a while as an artist for the New York Herald. He was awarded third prize for a work that was exhibited at the world fair in St. Louis in 1904, and won the right to American citizenship.[1] He married around this time. He went on to participate in exhibitions in various American cities and won prizes. In 1905 two of his oil paintings were shown at an exhibition in Portland, Oregon.[1] He became homesick for Turkey, and in 1912 he traveled to Constantinople, where he taught for a while at the Imperial Academy of Fine Arts (Sanayi-i Nefise Mektebi), predecessor of Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University. When World War I broke out in 1914 he decided to go to Tbilisi. There he spoke out against the Bolsheviks, and after the revolution in 1917 he was obliged to flee from Russia. He traveled to Constantinople and from there to St. Louis. In 1921 he restored the frescoes by Frederick Lincoln Stoddard in the St. Louis City Hall. He spent the rest of his life in St. Louis, where he is buried in Bellefontaine Cemetery. Many of his paintings are in collections in the city.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Kurkman, Garo (2004). Armenian painters in the Ottoman empire 1600-1923. İstanbul: Matüsalem Publications. ISBN 9789759201555.
  2. ^ La Coss, Louis (March 23, 1930). "Sarkis Erganian, Armenian Artist". The Globe-Democrat Newspaper. St. Louis.