A photographic and archaeological journey

LOS ANGELES, Calif. – The UCLA Promise Armenian Institute and the Armenian Film Foundation are pleased to present “Stations of the Cross on the Via Dolorosa, 1875-2022: A Photographic and Archaeological Journey,” a webinar taking place on Wednesday, June 29 at 10:00 a.m. PT via Zoom.

Launching a new exhibition from the Armenian Image Archive, the webinar will explore the 14 “Stations of the Cross” along the Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem, highlighting photographs from the Bonfils studio in 1875 and new images by photographer Jack Persekian , taken specifically for this exhibition . The event will also include a survey of archaeological evidence regarding the alleged burial site of Jesus of Nazareth by archaeologist and professor Shimon Gibson, Ph.D. of the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Registration for this webinar is mandatory and free.

With the development of (then) more advanced photographic processes, such as the collodion process, European photographers recognized the importance of documenting images of the Near East. Many have converged on Palestine to capture its archaeological sites, biblical scenes, and cultural artifacts. Around 1875, Félix Bonfils and his associates embarked on a photographic mission to document the processional path that Jesus of Nazareth took until his crucifixion on the Via Dolorosa.

George Sabougi. The Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem, Palestine, ca. 1880.

This webinar will feature exhibition curator Joseph Malikian, Ph.D., who will explore Studio Bonfils’ innovative contribution to photography. Persekian, who embarked on a project in 2022 to visually trace and record the cobblestone route of the Via Dolorosa and the symbolic tomb of Christ in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, will examine this project and its challenges by photographing the Via Dolorosa . Dr. Gibson will discuss what archaeological analysis can tell us about the supposed site of Jesus’ burial in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

This webinar is co-sponsored by the UCLA Richard Hovannisian Chair in Modern Armenian History, the UCLA Narekatsi Chair in Armenian Studies, the UCLA Library, the National Association for Armenian Studies and Research (NAASR), and the Ararat-Eskijian Museum.

The Armenian Image Archive (AIA) is the first of new collaborations between PAI and AFF, who signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in October 2021 to partner on a series of projects that will support Armenian cinema and photography at UCLA.

Guest Contributor

Guest contributions to the Armenian weekly are informative articles or press releases written and submitted by members of the community.

Guest Contributor

Michael E. Marquez