Different Worlds, Different Perspectives
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My work blends together the two different cultures that have come to define me: Turkey and America. It aims to show the deep emotional challenges of being an international student and traveler in a country far from one’s homeland. I created each of my works by exploring my own experiences of different places, of meeting different people, and confronting different emotions during my visits. My exposure to difference and change during my education at West Texas A&M University helped me to understand my own identity better and to discover how art, perhaps better than any other form of communication, can cross between worlds and people. I chose to work on painting for my thesis because it provides an ideal way for me to express my ideas and experiences. Paintings can be abstract but also colorful. It confronts the viewer head-on with its dramatic presence in a gallery. I have undertaken several steps to create my paintings, such as photographing architectural places, making abstract compositions from the pictures that I took, doing sketches of my compositions, then drawing the actual composition on canvas, and, finally, painting my designs in color. Architectural abstraction became my primary means of expression during my education in Canyon, as it allowed me to express ideas conceptually instead of literally. Mixing different colors, using diverse tones, and playing with architectural shapes and edges on canvas are the main ways for me to convey the feelings and experiences of my life, but because the forms are abstract they reach beyond the personal and become relatable more broadly by my viewers. I love to use bright and dark colors together because it creates tension and also symbolizes the differences of my thoughts as they relate to various places and times in my life. I want my viewers to feel the vibration of diverse colors as they relate to their own personal thoughts and perspectives. There is a transition between two different cultures in my work. Seeking to find myself as an artist in a place far removed from my familiar habits, culture, and family is the key theme of my works. And I appreciate that I had this opportunity to discover myself and my art as a Turkish person living and working in America.