Emily Artinian

born 1970, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, lives and works in London, UK


English, Russian, a little French, a few words in Armenian


The work is mainly, but not limited to, artist’s books and text based art. I see it as a continuation of my earlier studies in Russian literature, and a central intent with each project is to explore aspects of literature, narrative, and textual theory in a visual way. The pieces are meant as both visual works in their own right and also as an alternative to verbal literary criticism.
Projects have explored issues of translation (in a book about Lermontov’s Taman), of narrative fragmentation (works about Don DeLillo and Jorge Luis Borges) and the shady line between fiction and reality (in Real Fiction, an artist’s book about José Saramago).
A recent book, From Ararat to Angeltown, is about trends in post-Soviet Armenian literature and the Yerevan based writers' group Bnagir.

Another recent work is The High Window, a short film and accompanying book object – an 'intermedial' piece - about ways in which the mind visualises fiction.


2000 Camberwell College of Art, London - MA Book Arts with Distinction 

1995 Yale University - MA Slavic Languages and Literatures 

1992 Columbia University - BA Russian Language and Literature 

Ongoing: work exhibited as part of KIOSK, a travelling collection of independent publishing. Recent venues: ICA in London, Witte de With in Rotterdam, Istanbul Biennial

2006 venues: ARTSPACE, Auckland, NZ, Sydney Biennial, and the Charles H Scott Gallery, Vancouver

2006 With colleagues in the book artists group FACTION, teaching two day workshop on abstraction and representation in the artist’s book, Tate Britain, London.

From Ararat to Angeltown noted in Creative Review's Annual Type Design Awards 

2006 FACTION exhibition at University of the West of England, Bristol.

2006 Arnolfini bookshop, Bristol.

2005 Sense: Absence group exhibition at Clerkenwell Green Association, London.

2005 Gartal at Cornelia St Cafe, New York: Launch and reading of From Ararat to Angeltown.

2004 Residency at the Armenian Centre for Contemporary & Experimental Art, Yerevan.

2004 Constructing Reality group show, Foyles Gallery, London.

2001 Obviously, no one expects to discover anything group show, Foyles Gallery, London.

2000 Made in Southwark Public spaces installation at Quinlan’s Opticians, London.

2000 STRIP Camberwell MA Book Art Degree Show. Centenary Gallery, London.

2000 Illuminating Manuscripts group show, RK Burt Gallery, London.

Selected Articles

Bonkers on the Head: artists’ film, artists’ books, and intermedial blending, in Sense:Absence, catalogue to the exhibition, London: FACTION 2005Artist’s books and the virtual, commissioned writing project for the online journal How2, Spring 2006


The Tate Library, British Library, UCLA, Columbia University, Art Institute of Chicago and various other public and private collections in the US and UK


Founded in 2004 by Silvina Der-Meguerditchian, Underconstruction was a communication platform for artists interested in issues of identity, transglobalization and the construction of both personal and groupconsciousness. Underconstruction is also interested in issues of concern to worldwide diasporas, including but not limited to the Armenian diaspora. 

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