“I will continue to question our existence and try to be appeased in a crazy and violent world.” Armenian-Iberian accessory designer Mara Tchouhabjian is the author of intricate and ornate headpieces, using fabric, beads, embroidery, wire or natural woven materials. Enjoy a down-to-the-point interview with the artist below.

First off, could you introduce yourself to those who may not be familiar with your work?

I have a daily job linked to games, magic and the little things around us. Art is everywhere, so is magic. It’s a mutating work since it moves according to the mood.

What do you seek to add to the world as an artist?

To add new questions.

You are using masks as points of telling stories. Can you tell us what does fascinate you about a covered face?

Designing and activating masks means wanting change. Change of state, change of point of view, it is also regenerating time and space. It’s reversing the roles, it’s moving things,

it’s to believe in magic. It is to make the invisible tangible.

Can you share some insights into your creative process?

My creative process depends on my needs at the time and the questions that inhabit me, there is no fixed process. How I create will depend on a lot of elements, it’s often multifactorial. I try as much as possible to have fun and find proposals to move forward, both technically in manufacturing practices and to advance spiritually thanks to the questions asked. And, of course, sharing with other people as well by working in collaboration, which I often do, or by sharing the work.

What’s next for you? 

Continue to question our existence and try to be appeased in a crazy and violent world.

Our current theme, TOWARDS TERRA, focuses on utopian and dystopian futures. What would the future of art look like if you had the power to recreate it? 

The future of art would no longer be seen only as beauty but rather as a tool. A transformative tool. A possible other. And everyone would feel as an artist (this is already the case but each individual would be aware of it).

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Sensitised to creation early on, Mara Tchouhabjian grew up in a multicultural environment, and was always drawn to cross-functional creation. She is constantly developing a new approach to the mask. Marked by her Armenian and Iberian culture, she designs ritual and performance works as the renewed expression of points of view on oneself. Educated in fine arts, she extends her practice to textiles, sculpture, and performance and in parallel creates her first tableaux vivants (living pictures). For Mara, art allows the creation of an object, which is part of a ritualization that becomes truly magical, capable of taking the viewer out of time and space. During a residence in Shanghai, she joined forces with Tina Schwizgebe, her work partner of 10 years. They seek to create proposals together where it is impossible to distinguish the creator. Their frescoes, drawings, textiles, and tattoos made with four hands question the points of view and become mixed works. The duo is called The Crab and the Mechanic.


Designer / Mara Tchouhabjian




Interview / Kateřina Hynková

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