A prominent artist in the Near East, painter Simon Samsonian is little known in North America. A small child orphaned by the Genocide, he was raised in orphanages in Smyrna, Istanbul, and Greece. In 1927 he was transferred to an Armenian school in Cairo, where he became the art teacher at the Kalousdian Armenian School. Although traumatized by Genocide, Samsonian used his art to celebrate life. Active in Egyptian art circles, Samsonian became a prominent modernist painter who exhibited annually at the prestigious Le Salon du Caire and was awarded seven gold medals. His travels to the great art museums of Europe in the 1950’s impacted his art. His earlier works were Impressionist and Fauvist, but later evolved into a bold palette and figurist Cubism. He immigrated to the United States in 1968 where he later died in 2003. A major catalog of his work was printed in 1977.