“Celebration of Life of David Kareyan: A Retrospective Exhibition,” 2011. Exhibition view at Armenian Center for Contemporary Experimental Art (ACCEA /NPAK), Yerevan. Courtesy ACCEA /NPAK
Armenian Center for Contemporary Experimental Art (ACCE A; “NPAK” is the Armenian acronym) is a nonprofit foundation active in Armenia since 1992. It was officially incorporated as a nonprofit organization in Armenia and the United States in 1994. ACCE A /NPAK was founded by New York artist and poet Sonia Balassanian, with her husband, architect and planner Edward Balassanian.
ACCE A /NPAK’s mission is to introduce international contemporary art in Armenia, and to encourage the promotion of Armenian contemporary art in the international arena. Virtually all of the contemporary artists of Armenia have been either discovered or developed at the center, and have been introduced to the international scene there.
The center’s active departments in 2011 were the Department of Fine Arts and the Department of Theater, Cinema, and Video. The Departments of Music, Architecture, and Literature, which have been active in the past from time to time, are in the process of renovation.
ACCE A /NPAK organized the first official participation of Armenia at the Venice Biennale in 1995, and continued the effort for eight consecutive editions until 2009. Starting in 2011, the Government of Armenia took over Armenia’s participation in Venice directly.
Since April 1996, ACCE A /NPAK has been operating at a centrally located, 16,500-square-foot space provided by the Government of Armenia.