Born 1982, New Orleans, LA
Lives and works in Oakland, CA


2010    MFA California College of the Arts, San Francisco, CA
2003    BA Tulane University, New Orleans, LA

Solo Exhibitions

A Betrayal, Clifton Benevento, New York

Functions, Exploratorium, San Francisco, CA

An Overture, Altman Siegel, San Francisco, CA

MATRIX: Zarouhie Abdalian, Berkeley Art Museum, Berkeley, CA

Aliasings, Philadelphia Cathedral, Philadelphia, PA

Approximations,Dillard University Art Gallery, New Orleans, LA

Selected Group Exhibitions

The Space Between, MASS MoCA, North Adams, MA (Upcoming April)

Figure 8, Clifton Benevento, New York, NY
The Story of the Stone, A Tale of a Tub, Rotterdam, NL
Lulennial: A Slight Gestuary, Lulu, Mexico City, Mexico
A+P+I, Mills College Art Museum, Oakland, CA

Notes for Now, Prospect.3, New Orleans, LA
Audible Spaces, David Winton Bell Gallery, Brown University, Providence, RI
Nothing Beside Remains, Gertrude Contemporary, Melbourne, Australia
8th Berlin Biennale, Berlin, Germany
CAFAM Biennale “The Invisible Hand: Curating as Gesture,” Beijing, China

2012 SECA Art Award, SFMOMA, San Francisco, CA

Shanghai Biennial: Reactivation, Shanghai, China
Material Information, Kunstindustrie Museum, Bergen, Norway
When Attitudes Became Form Become Attitudes, CCA Wattis Institute of Contemporary Art, San Francisco, CA
Moscow International Biennale for Young Art, Moscow, Russia
Rendez-vous 12, South African National Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa
Mission Afterviews, Victoria Theater, San Francisco, CA
DocumentO, Krowswork, Oakland, CA

Istanbul Biennial, Istanbul, Turkey
Rendez-vous 11, Institut d’art contemporain, Villeurbanne, France
On the Edge, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts | Riverfront, LA
A Floorless Room Without Walls, The Lab, San Francisco, CA
Zarouhie Abdalian, AIDS 3-D, Matt Sheridan Smith, Altman Siegel, San Francisco, CA
Eb/N0, MacArthur B Arthur, Oakland, CA

Painted Over/Under, Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, Los Angeles, CA
SC13, SFADM, San Francisco, CA
Bay Area Currents, ProArts Gallery, Oakland, CA
MFA Thesis Exhibition, California College of the Arts, San Francisco, CA

Super Pop-Up Shop, Alameda Towne Centre, CA


“Zarouhie Abdalian,” The New Yorker, April 30
Martha Schwendener, “SoHo and TriBeCa, A Cradle of Contemporary Art, ” The New York Times, April 22, C33
Jack Ender, “Review: Zarouhie Abdalian,” ART QA Magazine, Issue #4, Spring
Wendy Vogel, “Zarouhie Abdalian, ” Artforum online, April 1

Chris Hambrick, “Sights and Sounds Weekly: 12/3/15, “, December 3
Sarah Burke, “Zarouhie Abdalian’s Instructions fro Group Activity, East Bay Express, November 11
Brian Karl, “Review: Nacht un Traeume,” Artforum, November
Daniel Garza-Usabiaga, “The Lulennial: Lulu Mexico City, “ Frieze, September, p164-165
Nick Stillma, “Prospect.3,” Artforum, January

Ian Forster, “Kerry James Marshall at Prospect.3,” Artist to Artist 2014,
Jonathan Griffin, “Prospect.3,” Frieze, Issue 168: December, 2014
John D’Addario, “Top Five Prospect.3 Moments,” The New Orleans Advocate, November 14
Raina Benoit, “A Brief Look: Zarouhie Abdalian,” Pelican Bomb, November 24
A Will bRown, “Zarouhie Abdalian Interview,” Studio International, October 8
Matthias Planitzer, “The Quiet Biennale,” Castor and Pollox, May 28
DanielVölzke, “Berlin Biennale: Kunst Werke,” Monopol, May 27
Aaron and Jackie Im Harbour, “Having Been Held Under the Sway,” Fillip, Issue No. 19 Spring, pgs. 77-83

Gwen Allen, “Review: Zarouhie Abdalian,” Artforum, December
Christina Linden, “Transmissions,” Modern Painters, November
Ceci Moss, “Zarouhie Abdalian: MATRIX 249,” The Wire, October, p.71
A. Will Brown, “Zarouhie Abdalian / MATRIX 249,” Art Practical, October 23
Carmen Winant, “Highlights 2013,” Frieze blog, December 20
Leora Lutz, “Review: SECA Award,” SFAQ, September
Matt Sussman, “Zarouhie Abdalian / MATRIX 249,” Art Practical, September 16
Christian L. Frock, “Seeking SFMOMA’s SECA Awards,” KQED, September 16
Sarah Thibault, “In Conversation with Zarouhie Abdalian,” SFAQ Online, September
Sarah Burke, “Zarouhie Abdalian / MATRIX 249.,” East Bay Express, September 9, p. 19)
Kenneth Barker “SFMOMA displays artworks in diverse setting,” San Francisco Chronicle, September 13
Caille Millner, “Letting in the beauty amid the urban noise,” San Francisco Chronicle, September 13
Marcia Tanner, “Zarouhie Abdalian: Elegant forms reflect on free speech,” Berkeleyside, August 21
Roula Seikaly, “Until I Die There Will Be Sounds: Zarouhie Abdalian at Berkeley Art Museum,” KQED, August 12
Tara McDowell, “Transmissions,” Art Agenda, July 19
artBahrain, “Interview: Zarouhie Abdalian” Art Bahrain Spring/Summer, p 62-64

Leigh Markopoulos, “The Accidental Exhibition: Chance as Curatorial Critique and Opportunity,” Journal of Curatorial Studies,Volume 1 Number 1, pgs. 7-24
Liz Glass and Claire Fitzsimmons, “When Attitudes Became Form Become Attitudes: Will Rogan, Pica, Amalia. “Zarouhie Abdalian,” San Francisco Arts Quarterly, Issue 10 Aug-Oct 2012, pgs. 76-83
Catherine Trifinov, “Of all the arts, for us the most important is the sign,”, July
Anna Tolstova, “Tinsel will save the world.” Kommerssant. No. 128 , July 14
Velimir Moist “Youth as a decoration,”, July 11
Lalani Marie Labong, “The Top 10 Artist You Need to Know in 2012’” California Home and Design

Xiaoyu Weng, “In the Name of Aesthetics: Solo, Group or Retrospective? – On Untitled (12th Istanbul Biennial), 2011,” Contemporary Art and Investment, Beijing, December 2011
Lora Baydar, “Kultür & Sanat: Zarouhie Abdalian,” Agos. Istanbul, October 22
Trisha Van Eck, “Poetry, Prose, and Pamphlet”, Art:21 Blog,October 21
Rose-Maria Gropp, “Kunstbiennale in Istanbul: Asketische Dichte, von Leben umgeben,” Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, October 20, Issue 244, Page 29


Art + Process + Ideas, Mills College, Oakland, CA

Art and Inquiry Residency, Exploratorium, San Francisco, CA

SECA Award, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, CA


Clifton Benevento is pleased to present the New York solo debut of Zarouhie Abdalian.

Rooted in the particularities of site and context, Abdalian’s work typically responds to the specific attributes of a given location, architectural setting, or social landscape. Within the context of Clifton Benevento, and with a characteristic economy of means, Abdalian presents A Betrayal, a suite of sculptures that are responsive to the gallery as a site of transition.

Abdalian’s sculptures reflect their transitory condition—as change between states, as expressly incomplete, as equivocating in their mode of address. At intervals, a percussive impulse punctuates the soundscape of the gallery, evidencing a momentary switch in the locking apparatus that comprises Openings.  The viewer encounters in One into two the bifurcated figure of Janus, the Roman god of passages, altered so as to nominate an orientation at odds with the original emblem; here, opposition and conflict invert the former relation of symmetry and harmony. Consisting of little more than the commonplace objects from which they are derived, these sculptures are decisively determined by the elementary operations that register them as changed. From what is called Mono County relies on only the slightest of estranging effects: a rectangular ‘face’ is cut into one side of a boulder of volcanic rock; the rectilinear surface, seemingly awaiting an identifying mark or inscription, only has violent prehistory to tell. A common tarp hung taut at an improbable angle, Some Dupont blue repeats the form of the blank plaque, cutting into the space of the gallery as an abstract plane.

Engaging the viewer’s experience of material boundaries in space, Abdalian’s installations activate thresholds or features that mark the transition between spaces. One of a series of works she has made for windows, Interregnum consists of a scrim that depicts a facsimile of the window it covers (its façade), now doubled.  Close of winter further situates her sculptures within her installation practice: a security door is transfigured through a series of cuts and subtractions yielding a group of objects that no longer function to bar passage but rather complicate the viewer’s movement through space.

A Betrayal extends Zarouhie Abdalian’s investigations into sites of public transaction, within both commercial and non-commercial spaces alike. Born 1982 in New Orleans, LA, her work has been exhibited in the United States at Altman Siegel Gallery, San Francisco MOMA, Berkeley Art Museum and the CCA Wattis Institute of Contemporary Art; and internationally at the Berlin, Shanghai and Istanbul Biennials.

The exhibition runs from March 5 – May 14, 2016; opening reception is Saturday, March 5 from 5-7pm. The gallery is located at 515 Broadway, New York, NY. Tue-Sat, 11am – 6pm.   For more information please contact Michael Clifton at

“Zarouhie Abdalian.” The New Yorker.  April 30, 2016.

Jack Ender, “Review: Zarouhie Abdalian.” ART QA Magazine. Spring Issue 2016.

Wendy Vogel, “Zarouhie Abdalian. ” Artforum online. April 1, 2016.