Though small, this fascinating museum does a great job of documenting the life and work of the prolific Armenian painter and sculptor. The museum showcases works created throughout Kochar’s career, including Lonely Woman, painted in 1913 when he was only 13. Labels are in English and there is a short film about his most famous piece, the Guernica-like Disaster of War (1962).
Born in Tbilisi in 1899, Kochar studied art there and in Moscow before moving to Paris in 1923, where he exhibited work in shows alongside Georges Braque, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró and many other avant-garde masters. In 1936 he relocated to Soviet-ruled Armenia, a move he no doubt regretted after he was imprisoned on politically motivated charges between 1941 and 1943. In later years, the Soviets recognised his work and bestowed a number of honours on him, including the People's Artist of the Soviet Union in 1976. He died in 1979.