Interview: Ozge Gunaydin
Luca Curci talks with Ozge Gunaydin during THE SKIN PROJECT, at THE LINE Contemporary Art Space.
Özge Günaydın was born in 1975 in Istanbul, Turkey. She has two daughters – Lidya and Alisa. She has graduated from Fashion Design and studied Art History in well-known universities. Currently, she continues working on her master degree in Faculty of Fine Arts. Özge is interested in art since she was 10. She is very much inspired by nature, the human impact and the ying yang balance of life. Through art, she would like to make an impact on society. Her first personal exhibition “Against the Cancer” in 2015 has considerable press coverage and she donated the sale earning to the Sinology Society which enabled nearly 1.000 women to get mammography for early diagnosis. Özge’s last work titled “Ecrin” was showcased in 2018 to attract attention to the endangered species and to protect the street animals. She has worked in various sizes of rhinos with pop art comments, and original patterns on bronze and composite castings. She has donated the income of this exhibition to the NEYAD on behalf of the Ecrin Center for Living, which will be established in order to meet the protection, sheltering and care needs of street animals.
Luca Curci – What is art for you?
Ozge Gunaydin – Art is the most important form of self-expression for me. I don’t know how to share my feelings and ideas with other people in a more creative way, rather than art. I don’t think I can live without art. It is art that defines me and makes me “Ozge”.
LC – What’s your background? What is the experience that has influenced your work the most?
OG – I was born June 4th, 1975. After graduating from İstek Foundation with the Golden Youth Award, I studied Fashion Design at Sabancı University. Then I took Art History courses at Boğaziçi University. Currently, I am a master and doctorate student in plastic arts at Yeditepe University. I’m a communication specialist and the owner of Brothers & Sisters Media Planning and Buying Company. I have been painting and sculpting since I was 10 years old. I have participated in many national and international exhibitions. My inspiration is everything the bad. I am an activist against injustice, inequality to nature and the people. My works have been feeding from the course of the world.
LC – What do you want to tell in your studies? Simply; What do you get inspired from?
OG – Actually, I’m an artist who cares the global problems in the world. I like to use rhinos at my works. The rhino has been a living symbolizing me since I was a child. I see the rhinos as the greatest symbol of the extinction of the world; so I’ve processed the theme of the rhinoceros in the works I’ve done so far. Rhinos are good mothers. They look up to 4 years old to their offsprings, monogamous and herbivorous. They don’t harm any living thing. They are also very shy creatures, they especially afraid of people. Unfortunately, they are threatened with extinction because they are massacred by people. Rhinos, in my opinion, are symbols of dignity and power. And they are the symbol of the extinction of nature, of animals, of the environment and of the world in the Universal sense. To me, man is the only living thing in the world! For this reason, while producing plastic art works, my aim is to raise awareness to prevent the harm of human species to the world and to inspire people to be more peaceful, more productive and more protective with nature, environment and animals. I make the artworks which focused on human too, which the rhino is not used. I chosed the newest one for canvas, Sameness! I want to make the people reminde that we are all equal and one, beside the diversity.
LC – Where do you find your inspiration?
OG – What strikes me the most is the extinction of the world and nature. I am an artist with a socialist structure. As you know, the world’s capital is governed by 10 families, and the majority of the capital holds 100 people. Today, 4.5 million people die because they cannot find bread and water. There was no gap between people’s income in any period of the world as today. At the point where the world is going now, the greed of some people, the oppression and consequently the holding the capital and the economy causes other people to die, the destruction of nature, the pollution of the environment and people to remain ignorant. What inspires me in my works, the troubles of the world. I am very sensitive and interested in every case and situation related to human, environmental and animal rights. I’m one of the artists who feed on pain. In this context, the most affecting me is the grave point that the world is now. My works express my sensitivities about economy, environment, education, culture and human.
LC – What is your creative process like?
OG – Art exists in every aspect of my life. Even though I have two workshops in Istanbul, any place that I can reach a paper and a pen is a workshop for me. I have hundreds of sketch books that I want to use in the project that I plan to implement in the upcoming period. I believe that these sketch books are the most important milestones that show my emotional and artistic development. John Berger is someone I take as a model and I believe is a great artist in every way. From this point of view, I try to keep a 365 degree perspective in the concept that I created: I write, I draw, I paint, I produce and I build…
LC – Which art themes do you pursue? What is your preferred subject, if there is any?
OG – I am artlover too, beside an artist who follow all the streams and read. I think the searching for new, self-sufficiency of the contemporary arts and criticise are very improving. That is why I follow the most famous artists and visit the art galleries.
LC – Do you agree with our vision of art and what do you think about the theme of the festival?
OG – Sure, I am agree with your vision of art. I really like the festival theme, “Canvas”.
LC – We were attracted by your last artistic production, has the artwork presented been created for the festival or as a part of preexisting works?
OG –The theme of the festival is very inspirational. I was thinking on human when I was producing. The participation to Skin Project was made my process fater. I would create the artworks which focused on human even would not participate this festival but the outcome would not the “Sameness”.
LC – Would you suggest a collaboration with us? What do you think about our services?
OG – Everyone has to support each other in order for art to create a universal language and spread. In order to spread the art, we must go to more streets, we must reach more people. In this regard. I believe that with the right distribution of the role of the stakeholders, the world will come to a much better place in the future. I thank to you for your amazing services. I really appreciate it and I will recommend Itsliquid Group to my network.
LC – What is your idea about ITSLIQUID GROUP?
OG – Itsliquid Group is a very professional organization, which supports multidiscipline sectors related with art. I would like to be a part of your future festivals and events!
LC – What are your suggestions about our services? Is there something more we can provide to artists?
OZ – Thank you Itsliquid for your amazing exhibition, Skin Project. I am really satisfied from your works for us and extended my application to your next exhibition, Out of Border. Due to the global economic crisis, a great number of Artists are not available to join physical exhibition. So, I recommend to do something online to reach and support more Artists from all over the world.