Long Night Faraway Voyages

Event  |  Reviews  |  Comments
© Courtesy of the artist & RAMPA
Long Night Faraway Voyages

Şair Nedim Caddesi No: 21a Akaretler
34357 İstanbul
January 8th, 2013 - February 9th, 2013
Opening: January 5th, 2013 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

(+90) 212 3270800
Tuesday – Saturday between 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. Monday by appointment.


Gürbüz meets viewers with her one-person exhibition at Rampa,
“Long Night. Faraway Voyages.”, on January 5–February 9, 2013. The
exhibition, composed of Gürbüz’s paintings, drawings, and sculptures
realized in 2011–12, displays the visual mythologies of Gürbüz’s
extensive art practice.
The works are a continuation of Gürbüz’s mysterious, magical
world that we had seen in previous exhibitions. In these large-scale
paintings and sculptures, Selma Gürbüz gives a voice to the images she
has compiled from both real and dream voyages: the human figures are
accompanied by animals and plants; inspiration from ancient Egyptian
art, Chinese and Japanese painting traditions, Velazquez, Monet, Islamic
miniatures and manuscripts can be traced in the works.
Gürbüz’s art is about images. These images are not purely painterly,
but are rather enriched by poetry, fairy tales, and parables. Each
painting has its own story; they are not born from stories, but rather
have formed their own unique tales. As has been pointed out about
Gürbüz’s work, “These paintings stem from a dream in the middle of the
night, lit by a full-moon.”
Selma Gürbüz looks at themes derived from history, nature, the
subconscious, and mythology—the human figures are quite often
alone, displaying animal-like characteristics. This points to them being
integrated into nature and that they are protected by nature. Their
discomforts and pain express the artist’s own creative process.
Recently, figures are situated on the artist’s meticulously woven,
dream-like landscapes, integrated as her palette transitions from black
to soft hues of brown. Her characters are mysterious and poetic at the
same time, inviting the viewer to interrogate and express their inner
worlds. We remember what we have seen and on the other side, the
reality is not out of our minds; it chases us. By displaying our fears,
dreams, and anxieties, Gürbüz actually points to what exists through
what is constructed. Perhaps this is why Gürbüz positions herself at the
intersection of curiosity and magic.
To see the world within this other world, the viewer does not need
glasses. Imagination is more than enough.
Selma Gürbüz (1960) was born in Istanbul, Turkey.
After having studied at Exeter College of Art Design
between 1980-1982, she graduated from Marmara
University Fine Arts Faculty in 1984. Her recent solo
exhibitions include “Mind’s Eye”, Lawrie Sahbibi
Gallery, Dubai (2011); “Shadows of Myself”, Rose Issa
Projects at Leighton House Museum, London (2011);
“Archetypes”, Warehouse (Antrepo) No: 3, Istanbul
(2010), “Sunny Shadows”, Gallery Apel, Istanbul
(2008) and Makii Masaru Fine Arts, Tokyo (2007);
“Feline I”, Galerie Maeght, Paris (2006); “Feline II”,
Gallery Apel, Istanbul (2006); “The Fairy and the
Genie”, Gallery Apel, Istanbul (2004), “Yünname”,
Gallery Apel, Istanbul (2000) and “Karaname”, Gallery
Apel, Istanbul (1999). Gürbüz has also participated
in many national and international group exhibitions
including “From Traditional to Contemporary” (2010),
“New Works, New Horizons” (2009) and “Modern
Experiences” (2008), Istanbul Modern, Istanbul; “Cara
a Cara” (travelling show), with Marco Del Re, Galerie
Maeght, Paris and Barcelona (2003); “Fantaisies du
Harem et les Nouvelles Shéhérazades” (travelling
show), Museum of Contemporary Art, Barcelona and
Museum of Natural History, Lyon (2003); “Le Cirque”
(travelling show), Gérard-Georges Lemaire, Editions
Eric Koehler, Athenee-Theatre Louis Jouvet, Paris,
Espace Mira Phalaina, Montreuil and Novomestka
Radnice, Prague (1996). Her other projects include
“Shadow theatre design for ‘More Wind’”, Portside
Gallery, Yokohama (2005) and “Futurist Stage Curtain
Design”, Revues Parlées, Centre Georges Pompidou,
Paris (1996); “Automatic Games”, Kwangju Biennale,
Korea (1995) and “L’Orient des Cafés” (traveling
show), French Cultural Centre, Cairo, Alexandria,
Athens, Thessaloniki, Jerusalem, Tel Aviv (1992).
Selma Gürbüz lives and works in Istanbul, Turkey.