Yuroz was born in a country without many freedoms, but where the joy of life, the passion of love, and the desire to make the world a better place was strong. His parents were hardworking people who fiercely loved their children and committed their lives to giving them the strongest ground in which to plant their own futures. Yuroz' father, who was known as "Marchik" or little boss, was a happy man who made everyone laugh and loved to talk to anyone, no matter what nation they hailed from. It is from his father Yuroz learned tolerance. Yuroz' mother was truly the mother that we read about behind great individuals. She was a driven woman, and she would make sure that all of her children would realize their full potential. With the love of his parents, Yuroz himself became a dedicated and loving father. His mother recognized her sons' talent and knew that his determination to create great art should be known to all. At the age of ten, with her son and his art in hand she helped him to gain acceptance into the Akop Kodjoyan School of Art, as one of the youngest students ever accepted into this very prestigious art school. Four years later he graduated with honors. At the age of 17, Yuroz would go on to Architectural and Art School at the University of Yerevan, and earn his masters in Architecture.
He loved many things about his country, but could never accept the Soviet views on self expression. Yuroz has said "Art thrives only in a free society" and with those words he began his journey to escape this oppression and find the freedom that would allow his artistic dreams to bear fruit. Yuroz arrived in America in 1985 at the age of 29 without friends, family, or much money, but with a passion that he unveiled through his drawings and paintings. By 1986 Yuroz was showing his work in a public gallery and in 1988 he had his first major one man show.
Victor Forbes of Sunstorm Magazine was one of the first art writers to use his voice to share his thoughts on Yuroz and made some interesting predictions. In an original article dating back to the late 80's he was asked to compare Yuroz to Picasso, "Who else at work as an artist today commands such widespread attention? Who else is so prolific, popular and accomplished in so many media?
Technically accomplished, he has developed a number of styles, creating from the depths of darkness. Who else has had entire episodes of some of the most watched television shows in history written around his art?" After some thought he answered, "Yuroz has far surpassed Picasso [. . .]. Yuroz is a generous soul with the strong yet innocent heart of a lion." Yuroz has a great deal of respect for Picasso and he explains it like this, "I admire Picasso for one reason: he would never stop with what he already created. He never was a sponge to his own material. He'd see art in everything. There is no destination. Every time there is a destination, there is a new beginning. Your imagination doesn't have a destination. If you ask me, art is not just about a beautiful painting hanging on your wall. People's understanding of art has to be deeper. Art is basically religion, the essence of living-what you are trying to accomplish in your life everyday, creating your own life. The object can be canvas, or yourself-the human being. Art is about creating your environment. "Yuroz considers himself a tool. His heart dictates to his hand. After absorbing and digesting all of these things, his work is a documentation of his own journey. A journey without a destination, a world without an end.
Yuroz learned at a very young age that your time on this earth was limited. He watched many of his friends and family members give up their lives to a cause and chose early on to make sure he left a message. He made this statement in his early thirties, "My work is to understand about men and women in creation, not just about love and all of those wonderful things, but about expressing yourself. If you paint something beautiful, it doesn't have to be happy. There is a law of beauty that is written by no one - it's just inside of you." He also speaks of the most amazing instrument that God ever gave us was our brain. He said "through all of my processes from beginning to now, there has always been a change and this always comes when I see I can make it better. Each time I achieve something, I discover something I could have done better, so the next painting comes up. It is never ending, you are always going to research something you can never accomplish. You become demanding to yourself and to your work. The best is inside of you, your own criteria, your own values. I don't know how this thought process happens, but for me it is limitless. I want to know who I am and what is inside my brain. I long to know how much I can grow, but to do that, I know I must have the courage to destroy what I have created. This is the biggest fear of creative people. Many great artists ended their careers in their early days by spending the rest of their lives recreating what established them. As you grow up, your vision and your views change. Your knowledge deepens and your creative mind needs to be true to your artistic integrity."
The artist has remained true to his artistic integrity by going on to master many different mediums. With the release of the United Nations Mural for Human Rights created entirely in the technique of cubism, along with the opening of a one-man cubist show at the Coral Springs Museum of Art, Yuroz has taken his place in history along with the fathers of cubism. Cubism is an avant-garde art movement that revolutionized European painting and sculpture in the 1900's. Instead of viewing subjects from a single, fixed angle, the cubist breaks them into many different facets, so that several aspects of the subject can be seen simultaneously. In a final statement in an article written by Bruce Helander, a fellow of the National Endowment for the Arts and curator of the Yuroz exhibit; this becomes part of the history of art. "Yuroz' innovative style and captivating subject matter require us to take a fresh look at cubism and how these images relate to us in a contemporary society. His exceptional strength as a painter comes from a natural intuitive talent supported by an exhaustive traditional arts education, which began at age ten. He later continued his studies in architecture whose principals he applied to the structure of his geometric-based compositions. In this most recent series of his work, the power of the human spirit is celebrated in colorful, poetic canvases that document the visual excitement of relationships, passion and togetherness. Even without the memorable narrative or figurative content, these paintings remain well crafted, with backgrounds that utilize an extensive, built-up, harmonic palette of aromatic color and texture. It's impossible to find an area in his pictures that is not fully resolved and inspirational. This artist continually challenges himself intellectually and creatively by abstracting the figure into cubist sections that are considerably more difficult to articulate successfully. Picasso and Braque have a respectable colleague."
Yuroz emerged on the art scene in the United States in 1987 with paintings and drawings that felt as though you could take them off the canvas and put them on a pedestal. He would tell us that each painting was alive for him and had a human dimension. Eventually he would bring these large sculptural bodies to life with the release of his first sculptures in 199-. He, like other artists at the time, was offered the opportunity to have his paintings transformed into sculpture by a foundry artisan, but being Yuroz, with his demand for quality, he chose to instead wait until he was ready.
His first sculpture, The Delicate Balance, changed the way we would perceive Yuroz as an artist forever. He had crossed the dimensional boundaries, and gave us the ability to follow the curves of his art with our hands. To join the lovers as they basked in the warmth of each other. With the release of his two new sculptures this year, The Whisper with its ability to draw you in and hear their secrets, and Tranquility, which at first glance takes your breath away with its sensual pose, he has taken us deeper into the creation of his art and the power it evokes as it wraps around our minds and allows us to dream.
In addition, Yuroz has released his first pieces of very unique sculpted jewelry in gold and silver, decorated with diamonds. A small collection of the pieces were unveiled at the New York Art Fair this year to an excited audience. Diane Herman, owner of Exposures International Gallery of Fine Art in Sedona, Arizona stated, "As you wear each piece, it becomes part of your being, a sensual experience that allows your mind to travel in the emotion evoked by the jewelry. Whether it is Yuroz's jewelry, painting, sculpture, his work is an emotional experience for me. The 'Love' is what it is all about. After I saw Yuroz's UN painting, (magnificent!) he brought it all together for me. Every culture is represented in these six huge canvases. I viewed the generations of struggles and how we all have grown. He showed me in this painting that with effort and hard work combined with integrity that the world is growing to a better place. Together with time, we are all doing it...together. Thank you Yuroz, for showing us we are all 'One.' As I viewed the painting, I see we all have the same struggles -- maybe a little different in shape and size. If we work hard and our basis is love and compassion then, with our family, with our world, we can succeed and rise as a whole. Yuroz himself has been a fine example of this." Like all of his art forms, Yuroz spent years educating himself on the intricacies of creating jewelry before designing and bringing these very special miniature pieces of art to the world.
Yuroz is also passionate about remembering where he came from- and those who were with him. He donates the proceeds from a variety of original pieces and limited editions to foundations world wide that reach out to people in need. He has personally raised close to a million dollars for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. He also has a soft spot for children's charities. His donations have also helped The CLARE Foundation in Santa Monica, California, Camp Good Times in Los Angeles, Saint Stephens Shelter in Minneapolis, The Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, The Pine Street Inn in Boston, The University Hospitals Ireland Center in Cleveland, St. Bonaventure University in New York, ABC Inc (Action for Brazil's Children) in Fort Lauderdale, The Make a Wish Foundation, Cinevegas Film Festival, The Rock n Roll Marathon, Cancer Wellness Center in Chicago, Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, Aids Task Force, Comic Relief, Operation USA and to many more to mention.
Some people might think that Yuroz has reached the dreamlike state of one of the figures in his canvases, their heads tilted as if in peaceful slumber, but he continues to surge forward because art is, in his words, a "religion of duty". He creates simply because he must. Only Yuroz knows why he is so driven to inspire the unimpassioned, to impassion the unromantic, to romanticize what he sees as a marvelous journey through this world's lives, loves, and hopes. To ask him...all you have to do is look at his work.