Vanadzor Art School was founded in 1975 by artists Martiros Saryan, Hakob Kojoyan and sculptor Ara Sargsian. It is considered the second oldest school in the republic after Merkurov Art School in Gyumri. The school has participated in a number of exhibitions in Brazil, India, Argentine, Europe and former Soviet countries. It was rewarded the first prize (a golden medal) in the world exhibition held in Portugal in 1977 where gifted children from all over the world took part (unfortunately the medal was lost due to the bad premises conditions after the earthquake). Participating at numerous exhibitions the students of the school have won different prizes and medals which are kept in the fund of the school.
Since the date of foundation the school has had 1 200 graduates most of whom today are famous painters, sculptors, architects. According to the words of the principle of the school, Firdasi Sahakian, the school aims not only at training painters and sculptors but also at teaching people to understand and to know art as this can help them to realize sense of the life.
There are many graduates of the school among famous people of today: V. Galstian, H. Sarukhanian, A. Nazarian as well as the school principle F. Sahakian and many others. 80% of the school teaching staff are creative artists.
The material and technical base of the school is in the excellent state which is used by Vanadzor State Teachers’ Training Institute, Architectural University and individual artists. The fund of the school is rich in interesting items of history: jugs, self-boilers, crania, etc. Since 1957 the best works of the students are kept in the fund.
The scholar program corresponds to the program of Terlemezian Art College and Art Institute of Yerevan. Children aged 11 and higher can be admitted to the school. The study course is four years after which they receive graduation certificates.