Jacques Karamanoukian Biography

Jacques Karamanoukian




Artist and art collector Jacques Karamanoukian was born in Paris in 1940. After completing his conscripted military service, he attended the Sorbonne where he studied literature. In 1966 he moved to the United States, settling in Ann Arbor and enrolling in graduate studies at the University of Michigan and teaching himself how to paint. He developed an interest in outsider art and art brut, which he would collect regularly.

After graduation Karamanoukian took up a job as a high school French teacher, which would prove to be the bread-and-butter career for much of his life as he painted, exhibited, collected, and opened a variety of art galleries on his own time. At age 29 he began traveling back to France with some regularity to purchase the works of artists he admired, adding several pieces to his galleries and personal collection. Over time the relationships he built between his French and American artist friends became the catalyst for two major exhibitions in Paris in 1999, at the Galerie Art Tisane and Galerie Halle Saint-Pierre. 

Karamanoukian died in Detroit, Michigan, in 2002.