Areg Balayan is a photographer based in Erevan, Armenia. As a freelance photographer, he worked with UN, UNIDO, YMCA, Armenia Fund, and LA-based USC Shoah Foundation. From 2009, Areg work as a staff photographer for the PAN Karabakh bureau. His photographs for PAN were published in several media, such as Reuters, Al Jazeera, Esquire Russia, and others.
This project offers an alternative framework for discussion regarding the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, one of the oldest and brutal ethnic conflicts in the post-Soviet space. While this conflict is usually addressed in the context of geopolitics and international law, we wanted to examine the traces it leaves behind.
Project co-creators: artist Edik Boghosian, photographer Areg Balayan and filmmaker Hrayr Sargsyan search for and select material evidence of this conflict to transform it into works of art - art installations, photo series, and a documentary film. This project opens up a dialogue about humanistic values as a reliable way of mutual understanding and coexistence. "Consequence: Artefact" is co-sponsored by the Peacebuilding through Capacity Enhancement and Civic Engagement initiative, funded by the European Union and implemented by EPF-Armenia, EPF-Azerbaijan through CRRC-Georgia and International Alert.
Aro was shot by a sniper; wounded by a mortar shell; also, his unit was ambushed. He says there is not a single intact spot on his body, except for one. He is disabled and can't work.
In 2017, during his military service at the border, Rafo blew up on a mine and lost a leg. He says that he adapted to his new life. He works as a computer repair technician.
At the age of 17, Yerem went to war. His tank got hit, Yerem nearly burned inside. As an aftermath, he lost sight, and his arms are crippled.
He stays at home these days.
During military service in 2016, Gevorg was hit by a sniper bullet. He lost an arm and one eye. He works in a copper mine.
Two sappers stand near the blown-up car exploded in 2018. On the way to the demining site, there were five people in the car. Three out five died instantly, the other two survived, and keep working as sappers.
Erna and I went to the same school in 1993-1995. She had already lost her leg by that time - it happened when she was 11 years old, in 1992, her house got hit by "Grad" missile. Today, she is a nurse and raises a wonderful son.
In April 2016, 3 brothers came under shellfire at the schoolyard. Older brother, Vagharshak, was killed. Gevorg, one of the twins, was wounded. Gor and Gevord still attend school.
In the period of 20 years, Artur went through two wars. In 1996, his car blew up on a mine. During the second war in 2016, Artur was wounded again. There are numerous metal shards left in his body, Arturs "favourite" one is a 15mm piece located near his heart. Artur is looking for a job.
Martha was born in 1985. On December 31, 1991, she came under shellfire. Martha lost her leg, suffered the face and arm wounds. Today, she is a web developer.
Oksana was born in a family on the other side of the conflict. Due to the conflict in 1988, her family was forced to leave their home and escape. After several years, they settled down in the USA. War took from Oksana her home, language, family, childhood and peace. Oksana is a writer and filmmaker.