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French Photographer Captures the Heart of Armenia.

I was impressed by the country’s kindness, open space, and a feeling that it is growing very fast to change for the better. I was particularly struck by Datev, which I found to be a very spiritual place.

For Armenia it is very different because it is not only about architecture. It is more about the people and the country of these people.”

-- Jean-Michel Berts

A mysterious solitude surrounds a first-century temple on a cloudy morning on the rim of Armenia’s Garni gorge — a sight unseen by the typical tourist zigzagging through the country’s landmarks. It is as if the famed structure is suddenly weightless, drifting against the backdrop of snow-capped mountains that rise above the Azat River.

The Temple of Garni, captured in its early-morning splendor by the award-winning French photographer Jean-Michel Berts, is one of 70 images by the artist in a new book on Armenia’s landscapes, people and architecture. Titled La Lumiere d’Armenie (The Light of Armenia), the volume was sponsored by the French-Armenian jeweler Cyril Waskoll Kazandjian and published in France under the imprint of his business, Waskoll.

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