Artist in Focus: Nezaket Ekici

June 3, 2020

The world is at a standstill and social distancing is part of a new norm, but studio life goes on! Braverman Gallery reached out to Nezaket Ekici who joined us for a short conversation that offers a glimpse into the artist’s studio, work and thought process, and life under lock down.

WHEN DID YOU FIRST REALIZE YOU WANTED TO BECOME AN ARTIST?
I was born in Turkey in 1970 and arrived at Duisburg Germany at the age of 3 years old. Growing up as a “Gastarbeiter” child in Germany I was dominated by many rules. My father was a poet, a teacher and a free thinker. He supported me in getting a good education and to being creative.

I knew early on since I was about 12 years old that I wanted to be an artist. I always loved to draw, and took painting classes nearly everyday after school. When I had the possiblity to go to University my first thought was to study art. And so it was. I studied, painting, sculpture, art history, art pedagogy in Munich, and performance art in Brunswick, Germany.

WHAT ARE YOU MOST FASCINATED BY THESE DAYS?
The blue sky, the sun, and the flowers.

WHAT ARE YOU READING RIGHT NOW?
I just finished “The Pigeon” by Patrick Süsskind, and am now reading “Zen in the Art of Archery” by German philosopher Eugen Herrigel.

DO YOU HAVE A STUDIO ROUTINE? WHAT IS IT LIKE?

The studio is where I make art, produce video performances, and experiment with materials, though I am not there on a daily basis. I often welcome and host meetings with curators, artists and colleagues in my studio as well. I also conduct artist talks, face to face, or online while I’m traveling to appear in live performances.

CHOOSE AN OBJECT IN YOUR STUDIO THAT IS IMPORTANT TO YOU. WHAT MAKES IT MORE SIGNIFICANT THAN OTHERS?
My performance costumes. They are so important because the unique costumes are in themselves works of art. The costumes embody the idea of a performance. I never choose costumes simply for themselves, rather always in close relation to a peroformance idea.

WHAT ARTISTS OR ARTWORKS ARE YOU MOST INFLUENCED BY?
Mathew Barney, Bill Viola, Marina Abramovic, Cindy Sherman, Shirin Neshat.
WHICH CITY WOULD YOU SAY HAS IMPACTED YOUR ARTISTIC PRACTICE, AND HOW?
Every city has interesting aspects. I open my eyes and get inspiration wherever I am. If I had to choose, I would say it is New York. I have been in New York several times, having performed at PS1 and in a Gallery in Queens. New York is so inspiring because it is the biggest melting pot of cultures I can think of. Rome also has a special meaning, full of art from ancient times. I lived there for nealry a year at the Villa Massimo Residence Program. Besides that, there is my love for Istanbul which I do not want to forget. I had the chance to live there twice in artist residency programs, and of course there is always Tel Aviv.
WHAT IS THE BIGGEST MISTAKE YOU MADE IN YOUR LIFE?
Not to have properly learn and perfect the grammar in the different languages I speak – German, Turkish, English, and Italian. To be honest, I have no real “mother tongue”.
DESCRIBE YOUR IDEAL LUNCH.
At the moment I love only salad.

 

ANY ONLINE RECOMMENDATIONS?
Besides my own websiteI recommend the Artist in Residency Programs I took part in. The Villa Massimo in Rome and the Culture Academy Istanbul .

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