Stranger than Paradise

xist Istanbul
15.10-21.11.2020

I painted the watercolor sea patterns titles 'A Year Later' from my exhibition 'Stranger Than Paradise' one morning between four-thirty and seven in late July.

There were various reasons (which I realized later on) as to why I woke up so early in the morning to paint these patterns:

1. I'd been constantly thinking about the news of Pinar Gültekin who was recently murdered. I'd been thinking about ways to contribute to the Istanbul Convention campaign and news kept coming about other women being killed. I couldn't sleep. 

2. There were messages coming in and out of the group 'Free Osman Kavala' about the 1,000 day of his unjust imprisonment. The day he was acquitted at the court and re-apprehended, I joined for the fist time those who were visiting the Silivri Prison for support. As we drove in a bus by the sea, I thought that image gave me hope. There were so many imprisoned politicians, journalists and lawyers who couldn't see the sea. 

3. The number of Covid 19 cases were on the rise. We didn't want to put ourselves or others at risk by traveling from Switzerland to Turkey (or another country). Regardless of where we were living, many things about the near future were unclear and it felt suffocating. The sea was also (partly) distant to us. I couldn't sleep. 

The seas I painted with the watercolors I found on the table in the living room came in different sizes and shades in blue. They all had a skyline. I placed them side by side and looked at them for a while. 

It's been nearly two months since that morning but my dreams related to these patterns haven't changed. 

One is this:

All women killed by men are still alive. They lough, jump around, have fun or calmly swim in the sea. 

I wish I could get close to them, get their hair scattered by the waved from their eyes and tell them they're going to be alright. 

September 2020

Zurich