Artist Anahid Aslanyan Makes Magic

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Anahid Aslanyan. Photo: Judy Goddess

Potrero Hill artist, Anahid Aslanyan, described her style as “modern mysticism, art that comes from the spirit and explores the dream universe of the soul…intuitive, a magical process translating my emotional truths into color and form.” 

Aslanyan works with acrylics, aqua oils, mixed media, collage, and found objects. Nature often inspires her, with music and mediation as her muse. 

“I let her take me where she wants. I like ambiguity in art so each viewer can see what speaks to them.”

Aslanyan was born in Iran to Armenian parents. Her mother’s family fled Armenia 450 years ago; her father’s escaped after the Turks took over Armenia in the 19th Century. She emigrated to the United States in 1969, joining her parents in Florida. 

Unable to find a job – “when employers heard I was Iranian they thought I had horns growing out of my head” – her older sister’s description of life in the Bay Area convinced Aslanyan and her brother to relocate to San Francisco.

Aslanyan fondly remembers her years in the Goodman building, an artists’ commune located on Geary Boulevard from which the creatives were evicted in 1983. Aslanyan is one of the few artists from the old building renting space in “Goodman 2” on 18th and Arkansas streets.  She misses the larger community of fellow artists but appreciates the garden, which is “ideal for meditating.” 

A San Francisco Art Institute graduate, Aslanyan has exhibited pieces in Armenia and the Czech Republic. Her work can presently be seen at Collage Gallery, on 18th Street, and in the lobby of the Goodman 2 building, 

“Art making connects me to my soul and spirit,” she said.