Deniz~The sea

9533004939_a06b10be80_o(1)                            Photo credits:Sam Agnew

Deniz gibiyim… Dalgaların beni istedikleri yere alıp sürüklemesine rağmen geleceğe güvenle bakarım. Dalgalara güvenirim. Ancak, çoğu zaman onları kontrol etmeye çalışırım. Hiçbir rüzgar, hiçbir fırtına, hiçbir yağmur, hiçbir gök gürültüsü, yıldırım ya da siyah bulutlar hayallerimi ve umudumu yok edemez. Cünkü soyadım İyimser. Her zaman hayallerinin peşinde koşan birisiyim. Hiç durmam. Duramam. Başarılı olsam da olmasam da önemli değildir. Seyahat, varış yerinden daha önemlidir ve de daha güzel, daha manalı. Umutsuzluğa vakit yok. Bir limana er ya da geç ulaşacağım. Ve eğer o benim hayalımdeki “limanım” değilse yolculuğuma devam edeceğim. Bir denizim, duramam. Her gerçekleştirilmiş hayalin ardından yeni bir hayal doğar. Her hüsran sonrası yeni bir umut doğar. Her ölen dalga yeni bir dalga doğurur. Bu denizin güzelliği. Deniz kontrol edemez. Mevlana’nın da dediği gibi “Kalp deniz, dil kıyı gibidir. Denizde ne varsa kıyıya o vurur.” Nasıl olsa.


I’m like the sea… The waves carry me where they want, but still, I am confident about the future. I trust the waves. Although most of the time I’m trying hard to control them. No wind, no storm, no rain, no thunder, no lightning or black clouds can take my dreams and hope away. Because my second name is Optimist. I’m always chasing rainbows. I never stop. I cannot stop. It doesn’t matter whether I succeed or not, the journey is more important than the destination. And more beautiful. More meaningful. There is no time for desperation. Sooner or later I will reach a port. And if that’s not the „port” of my dreams, I will continue the journey. I am a sea. I cannot stop. After every fulfilled dream a new dream is born. After every defeat a new hope is born. Every dying wave gives birth to a new wave. That’s the beauty of the sea. The sea cannot be controlled. As Mevlana said “Heart is a sea, language is a shore. Whatever sea includes, will hit the shore.” Sooner or later.

Maktub…

2759904631_3a2204901a_oPhoto: Celso Flores

No heaven without pain…

No pain without love…

No love without God.

No us. No-one.

Maktub*.

Your sun is our rain

No rainbow, just the flame

which burns with every tear

your rest and our peace…

Maktub.

Unspoken questions, silent feelings

trembling hearts and sorrows…

Deserted roses, million colours

faded away in black holes…

Maktub.

Heal us, oh memory

your smiles, your kindness are our need

to soothe the storm and plant the seeds

of future smiles and dreams.

Maktub!

My clumsy poetry dedicated to my dear grandmother who is watching us from heaven… Inspired by Paulo Coelho’s book The Alchemist

* “Maktub” the merchant said, finally.
“What does that mean?”
“You would have to have been born an Arab to understand,” he answered. “But in your language it would be something like ‘It is written.”
The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho
Gallery

The Muse Meets the Artist. The Art meets Istanbul

3131f607c569c2b2490640bca6403af9Orhan Gürel

Late Summer. Late Sunday. Late… Still not too late for art. Not too late for dreams. Never too late for Istanbul. Depicted in blue and orange. Cold and hot. Rational and passionate. One muse, several artists. Frozen moments in warm rays. Past and present. History and future. Tradition and modernity. It’s all here. No technical terms, only paint drops and feelings from someone who loves Istanbul and art. Far from being an expert, grounded only in the reality of subjective emotions aroused from less or more famous canvases. I made a selection of my favourite paintings, which have the power to make me dream about their muse. About the world’s capital, as Napoleon used to call it. About Istanbul.

I’ve unwittingly chosen paintings dominated by orange and blue. After a brief reflection I’ve concluded that these have to be the colours of Istanbul. At least for me. I see Istanbul in orange and blue. Whether we talk about tradition, warm sunny days, adventure, passion, rust, noisy people and music, electric burst… or silence, modernity, reason, dreams, refreshing waves binding the icy sky, it’s all Istanbul. Orange and blue. Orhan Gürel knew this, and added to his blue Istanbul mild rays of orange. He melted the contrasting colours until it was impossible to separate them (see the first painting).

Another painter who was inspired by Istanbul and whom I admire is Erbil Devrim. His unique painting style is somehow opposing Gürel’s style by tracing clear lines instead of blurred contours. His originality caught the attention of the international audience. According to Quadro Art, in 1968 Devrim was elected Turkey’s “Young Artist Of The Year” and in 1991 he was awarded the prestigious title of Turkey’s State Artist. [1] In my opinion these are two of his best pieces:

devrim erbil

gOrange or blue? Or both? I cannot decide!

My list couldn’t ignore the painter who was awarded “The Most Successful Artist of Turkey” in 2004, Ismail Acar. In his paintings the “East appears to meet the West, with tens of thousands of years’ history viewed by him in a contemporary way . Ismail Acar applies contemporary media techniques, including computer technology, to traditional painting techniques.” [2] The following painting is without question my no. 1 from his work! It gives me a dreamy insight of reality, without drawing a line between fantasy and truth, providing the opportunity to choose which Istanbul fits us better. The inside one, the outside one? The upside down Istanbul?

www.pinterest.com

However my favourite paintings depicting Istanbul were created by the Ukrainian-born Russian-Armenian painter Ivan Konstantinovich Aivazovsky  (1817-1900). Tutt’arta tells us his story: “In 1845, Aivazovsky went to İstanbul upon the invitation of Sultan Abdülmecid I, a city he was to travel to eight times between 1845-1890. During his long sojourn in İstanbul, Aivazovsky was commissioned for a number of paintings as a court painter by the Ottoman Sultans Abdülmecid, Abdulaziz and Abdulhamid, 30 of which are currently on display in the Ottoman Imperial Palace, the Dolmabahce Museum and many other museums in Turkey.” [3] When I’m looking at these paintings I feel like travelling back to time. They nurture my curiosity about the Ottoman past and flatter my imagined memory. istanbul ivan as

Ivan Constantinovich Aivazovsky + Ива́н Константи́нович Айвазо́вский - Tutt'Art@ (35)

 

Is there anything more beautiful than Constantinople bathing in the warm sunset rays? I would love to have one of this painting in my living room! Although it’s quite risky…as I might be unable to take my eyes off this master-pieces…

What about you? Which one do you prefer?

Bibliography:

  1. Erbil, Devrim, Quadro Fine Art Gallery (visited: 31.08.2014)
  2. The Evolution of Turkish Art, “The Art History Archive” (visited: 31.08.2014)
  3. Ivan Aivazovsky | Seascape and landscape painter, “Tutt’arta” (visited: 31.08.2014)

Duygular. Aşkistan’dan sevgilerle

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“Aşk bir seferdir. Bu sefere çıkan her her yolcu, istese de istemese de tepeden tırnağa değişir. Bu yollara dalıp da değişmeyen yoktur.” (Love is a journey. During the journey travellers change from top to toe whether they want or not. No one can travel into love and remain the same.) Elif Șafak-Așk, Rule 12

Today I’m inviting you in a unique journey  to Aşkistan, the Land of Love. We will speak its language and learn the recipe of love. Are you ready?

If yes, open your heart, close your eyes and spread your love all around.We need it, we live it. Because love makes us human. Love creates the Good and chases the Bad away. Love prevents us from hurting others. Love draws smiles on our faces and in our souls. Love is happiness. Love is compassion and empathy. Love takes care of others. Love wipes the tears away. Love creates beauty… We can neither enjoy nor recognize the true beauty of nature or people without watching them with the eyes of our hearts. Love is understanding and discovery. We fall in love with moments, places, people…  We fall in love with life. It’s easy, free and beneficial. So what’s the recipe? Love is usually buried in negative feelings, from sadness, hate to egoism, jealousy. All you need to do is to take a hoe and dig it up!

  • Whenever you feel sad add a pinch of smile to your day and you’ll feel better
  • If you hate somebody, remember that you are the one who suffers the most from hate! If someone hurts you, forgive him/her and free yourself from negative feelings.
  • Unfortunately we are all egotists to a certain degree, loving ourselves more than others. Act contrary! Help others as often as possible and the egoism will fade away gradually in the light of the happiness you create to others. You will definitely feel better when seeing the smile on your mother’s face after you cleaned up, the satisfaction on that poor puppy’s face after feeding it, the gratitude of your colleague when helping him/her, the sparkles in the eyes of a homeless child when feeding him, playing with him or teaching him to read or count… There are so many things you can do!
  • Are you jealous on other people’s success or happiness? Then contribute to them! Help them to become more successful and happy. This way you’ll learn to be happy for others!

Now let’s learn some useful words/ expression you’ll need in Așkistan:

  • așk, sevgi-love
  • duygular-emotions, feelings
  • biraz sevgi göstermek-show a little love
  • gerçek sevgi-real love
  • seni seviyorum-I love you
  • sevmek-to love
  • sevgi bütün kalpleri yumuşatır– love makes all heart gentle
  • fall in love-aşık olmak
  • yürek, kalp-heart
  • kalbini açmak-open one’s heart
  • dünyayı daha iyi bir yer haline getirmek– make the world a better place
  • gülmek-smile
  • gülümsetmek-make someone smile
  • mutluluk-happiness
  • mutlu olmak-be happy
  • mutlu etmek-make happy
  • mutlu son-happy ending
  • merhamet-compassion
  • eşduyum-empathy
  • özen göstermek-take care
  • ruh-soul
  • bencillik-egoism
  • bencil-egotist
  • kıskançlık-jealousy
  • kıskanç-jealous
  • üzüntü-sadness
  • üzgün-sad
  • sinir, öfke-anger
  • sinirli-angry
  • gözyaşı-tears
  • acı çekmek-to suffer

 

Photo by: Kessie from Brighton

Colours of life and…stairs a la Turca

143743If someone asks me “How is your life?”(Hayatın nasıl?) the best answer (cevap) I can give is “Very colourful” (Çok renkli), most of the time (zaman) painted (boyamak) in bright (parlak) and serene (rahat) colours like blue (mavi) or green (yeşil), sunbathed in yellow (sarı) because my first love (așk) is the sun (güneş), splashed with orange (turuncu) refreshing orange (portokal) juice, fired with red (kırmızı) enthusiasm (heves), sweetened with pink (pembe) childish smiles and purple (mor) dreams (hayal), powered with a great amount of white (beyaz) determination (azim)… and only extremely rarely (nadiren) stained with grey (gri) or black (siyah) melancholy (melankoli) and fears (korku).

We (biz) all live (yaşamak) in a world (dünya) of colours, having the opportunity (imkan) to choose (seçmek) the proper shades (gölge) and quantities (miktar) of paint for our life’s masterpiece (başyapıt). We can play (oynamak) with colours as we wish… we can throw all our ‘raw’ feelings (duygu) on the canvas or follow our rationality’s (rasyonalite) rigid methods of painting… What we should keep in mind (akılda tutmak) while handling the paint brush (boya fırçası) is that we cannot erase (silmek) our actions (eylem) and that we have only one canvas… So we should be very careful (dikkatlı) not to waste (boşa harcamak) our time and space on the canvas with shapes (şekil) and shades which do not represent (temsil etmek) us, creating a false (yanlış) and unsatisfying painting, with its colours melting (erimek) in a dark (koyu) and dirty (kirli) mixture. It’s hard (zor) to be the artist (sanatçı) of your own life, to manage events (olay), feelings (duygu) and facts in a proper manner, to take sincere (dürüst) decisions (karar) and to make our mind (akıl) see eye to eye with our heart (kalp). If we succeed (başarmak) our inner painting will be reflected (yansıtmak) in our ‘outside’ world as well, colouring our lenses (mercek) and everything that surrounds (çevrelemek) us. Our ‘outside’ world follows our ‘inside’ world. And vice versa (tersine).

I love colours, and probably that is another reason (sebep) why I love Turkey. It’s a colourful and lively (ruhlu) country (ülke). From its  people (halk), cities, bazaars to its… stairs (merdiven). Everything is splashed with colours. The wave (dalga) of rainbow (gökkuşağı) stairs hit Turkey in 2013, when a retired (emekli) engineer (mühendis), Huseyin Cetinel, painted a massive staircase in rainbow hues in Istanbul. Even though the rainbow stairs became the symbol (simge) of the anti-government resistance (direnme) and of the LGBT community, the original purpose (amaç) was to make people smile (gülmek). Today there are many rainbow stairs all around Turkey, colouring happiness (mutluluk) on faces (yüz) and souls (can).

Image source: [1]