Cat’s out of the bag!
February 4, 2010, 12:14 pm
Filed under: English, Refraction

I am still learning from refraction. Having a show is like a crash course it turns out. From practical to theoretical I made quite a few discoveries already. For starters I felt exposed, naked, vulnerable and emotional like never before. Although I didn’t think much of it as I poured it all out into the space it was a lot of ‘me’ in the end to be seen. People who knew me smiled and others paused for another look. I wouldn’t go so far as to say that the piece was a self-portrait but it certainly was a reflection of my ambitions, passions, caprices, fears and likes. On some level perhaps this exercise was a ‘cleansing’ where I shook off my doubts and transformed an excess of ideas into something that can stand on its own.  For what it’s worth this was an honest project.

I had some good feed back too but learnt that feed back in fact is scarce and hard to come by. For example, my good friend Eser suggested that refraction could read as a ‘maximalist’ piece bearing ‘minimalist’ features. Maximalism in plastic arts emphasizes work-intensive practices and concentrates on the process of creation itself. It also concerns the ‘excess’. Very simply put minimalist art on the other hand is literal. It is art stripped down to its most fundamental features, like geometry. She also mentioned an emblematic theme throughout the exhibition with an undertone of the ‘sublime’. She felt a certain mystery veiled behind the main constructions/signs in the room. My cousin on the other hand saved me from a conceptual blockade when she advised me that I could let go of the concept at one point and go wild which then ‘maximized’ my infusion of the ‘fun me’ into the piece.  Another friend pointed at the theatrical qualities of refraction and reminded me of my interest in stage design. Strange but three valuable feedbacks might have set the course of my art from this day on.

Once again, I have also proven to myself that my happiness depends on creating. While creating for refraction during the first three weeks of 2010 I already felt happier than in the whole year of 2009. Which tells me I should ride this momentum generated by my first solo show and start imagining what’s to come! The cat is out of the bag!

Refraction closes on Sunday so I have decided to celebrate its closing at the space with a big bang. You are all invited to join me to take one last tipsy look at it at 6pm on Saturday, February 6. BYOB! (bring your own booze)

3 days to Closing!


I ‘make’ therefore am I?
January 25, 2010, 3:07 pm
Filed under: English, Refraction

REFRACTION/KIRILIM finally opened despite an ugly rain storm. Family and friends showed up and it turned out to be a fun opening. Surprisingly I was relaxed and very very happy to have finished the piece in time. Well, everything was in place at 5 pm to be exact after which I ‘stormed’ to the studio, took a shower and was back at the space in my ‘opening outfit’ at 5:30 pm sharp. The rest of the night involved heavy drinking, dancing and celebrating at Off Pera with a group of close friends and a clear conscience having ‘best-ecuted’ the piece. I had to go back to the space on Saturday open the room but only a few showed up because of the snow that seems to have paralyzed the city. Sunday was my day off at home watching dvds and relaxing by the fireplace. Today I am back at Tunel to sort out some dvd issues and to upload some photos I took at the space. It started snowing again and this time it looks serious. Will anyone be able to see what I have made??

I have also been thinking about what I have made. I am beginning to think what interests me most is ‘making’ things. The act of making that is. As I was preparing for the show I had a feeling at times that I could make/build without ever stopping if I had more time. Sort of like the opposite of a woodworm that keeps eating through wood, I would build and connect to create a continuum of constructs. Where does this urge to build come from then that seems to be the heart of my art? Am I finally becoming aware of the reasons that propel me to make art? I feel like I may understand myself and my art better if I take a closer look at ‘make-ing’! I make therefore am I?

For those of you curious ones the show will be on for another two weeks. The visiting hours are from 3pm to 7pm on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. By all means come and see and let me know what you think. Every artist needs feedback, good or bad, to move on and to get better at ‘it’!

3 days since opening!

Opening Day!
January 22, 2010, 1:53 am
Filed under: English, Refraction

So, my chair didn’t work as expected; green flooring was to green (I think I might have fixed it); I accidentally threw away the wires I was going to use to hang my collages (so I will have to buy new wire and hang them tomorrow); and the yellow canvas was oh-so-yellow!! and I made this nonsense yellow thing out of it trying to make it less yellow and I am dying to go back to the room and take it apart like a maniac! I think this was the ugliest thing I have done during this project. I ended up making this shameful “Haluk Akakce-esque” bs with cut-outs/spray paint??/tape/WHATEVER I CAN THINK OF TO SAVE THE DAMN THING!  I blame it on sleep deprivation and panic!! For all of the above, I now have a set of solutions and I think I just might pull this opening off tomorrow. Believe me when I say it is a close call. My main project for tomorrow STILL is to paint the platform. I am hoping it is not as big a project as it sounds. I think I might finally use text to do this. Speaking of Haluk, I have to write an article on his new installation now which is due tomorrow morning. Why now??? This should be last thing I have to worry about now but… THEN tomorrow I have to go to my studio to retype it using Turkish characters, mail it, go back to the room (space) to finish all the things I listed above  (PLUS), get a haircut (it has been two months maybe?!), shower and be ready to face the public! I think by 3 I should be done at the room so that I can groom myself and breath before the craziness starts. So, this is it people! The countdown is over and you may not hear from me until say mid next week when I finally catch up with my sleep and have feedback on the show to share. Wish me luck!!! Over and out!

Opening day TODAY!!

Are we there yet??
January 21, 2010, 1:57 am
Filed under: English, Refraction

Not quite! I think someone will have to pluck me off the space on Friday! I am confident this is some sort of madness. The space is a colourful mess and I literally cannot find anything anymore. Things blend in. My tools for example. I also have, say, twenty odd bags which I no longer remember their content. Enough nagging already. The lights went off at the gallery this evening. There was a blackout in the neighbourhood. And if I am lucky it won’t happen at the opening. I don’t even want to believe there is the slightest chance of it happening. So I left the space early and came to my studio. Since then I have been racing to make my collages which will hang in front of the central window. So far I finished one and hopefully I will finish the second one tomorrow morning. I still have to make my ‘black box’. With what energy?? The later I stay up the more I steal from my time tomorrow. Or, I don’t sleep! Maybe a little. Anyway, tomorrow we will be trying the projection for the first time. After this the light situation should become clearer. I still have to make two things that will hang off the ceiling and be tied to the same rope. Basically their weight will balance each other so that they stay up in the air. Hmmm… I have to finish the corner by the entrance and put my ‘coin’ in place. I need to cover the light switches with some yellow material I bought and hang the mirror. Oh, and I still have to paint the platform. I better stop making a list because it goes on and on it is freaking me out already! Did I mention Beck’s will sponsor the drinks at the opening? I may have to down a few before the opening it seems. Ouch!


Beck beck beck’s!
January 20, 2010, 2:19 am
Filed under: English, Refraction

I got a sponsor! For beer only! BECK’S! Mind you, I am grateful! I cannot imagine having a sponsor for life anyway. Shouldn’t either! So… I finished Autoban and it is a star! Therefore I felt like I had the right to got out and have a few pints. Just got back home. Couldn’t finish what I had planned for today but that’s alright as I did do a lot. But I still have a lot in store  for tomorrow so I set my alarm to 6:30am!!! Those of you who get up so early please call me as I don’ t seem to respond to my alarm clock anymore. Anyway, my friend who stopped by thinks the space looks busy. I do too! I would like to think that it is purposefully busy (yes it is!!!). Or maybe it is busy because I would like to show off and like everyone to see what I am capable of. People’s first reaction is that I have done a lot whereas I would prefer them to say I have done well. My advise is, spend some time in the space and pay attention. There is A LOT to see! I will have to be really efficient tomorrow so this is it for now. I apologize if this is too boring yet it is not because I am dying here! Seriously this is the hardest I worked since my lawyer years! Thank god! Finally I am killing myself over something I love! Touch woody!!!

2 days to opening! What???

January 19, 2010, 12:24 am
Filed under: English, Refraction

I am sprinting! Trying at least. It has been a busy weekend sorting out the fold-up (8 pages of it! Both front and back…) Cousin helped out. Well, she made the whole thing but I had to type, type and type. Graphic design is a pain. And to my cousin, I am! Well, was actually. Poster is ready too. My friend Dilara is now working on posting our designed invite as an event on facebook. Why not me? Because when it comes to facebook-ing I am not quite there yet to say the least. I would rather be at the space building. I did my best trying to be productive today. There were times when I was standing in the middle of the room like an idiot overwhelmed by the things I still have to do. The space is a mess and it needs to be tidied up. I just can’t see anymore. I now need to do my final to-do-list to get this thing up and ready for Friday. But first I need a good night’s sleep! I really really need a good sleep people. I tried making some collages but ended up throwing all the materials around making a mess of my studio too. An idea or two popped up, yes, but tomorrow night will have to be a very productive one. I need to start AND finish making these suckers! I thought about doing something with my chair too. It now seems like a grand idea but I can’t think straight so I will have to revisit “the idea” tomorrow and decide if I am hallucinating. Plus it may be hard to bring about. So, off to bed now. Over and out!

Three days to opening people! Three days!!

January 16, 2010, 12:35 pm
Filed under: English, Refraction

I finished Flamm-ylon yesterday so all three ‘leads’ are in place now! I am quite happy with this third lead.  In fact, this last bit that I made just might be the best part of the entire piece! I can only hope that the whole thing will look even better when I bring in all the other pieces I need to make next week.

I am having a late start to my day and I have to run off to my cousin to begin working on a fold-up flyer. I have never really written a proper artist’s statement and a bio so in all honesty I am dreading it a bit. I am, however, hopeful that the folds of the fold-up will successfully mimic the idea of refraction. If all goes well the flyer should be finished by this evening which will allow me to work some more on my drawings.

I have been thinking about my drawings and I feel like I should move away from drawing from the photos I took and try improvising a bit to perhaps reflect some of the mess I made at the gallery. Our drawing projects with my good friend Ryo comes to mind. Since I have had my tea this morning I pretty much decided to loosen up with my drawings too and go wild. Should I then draw at the space?

I can hardly believe that it is already Saturday and that Refraction should all be done and ready to be viewed by the end of Thursday. Of course I need to keep in mind that I will have to peal the film left over from the previous show off all three windows, clear the space and move junk out and back to my studio, get the projector and test it and finally clean the space a little too. Does this only leave me with three to four full days in total to finish work on the piece? OMG!

6 days to opening!