istanbul

Cengiz Çekil

Rampa

Born in 1945, Cengiz Çekil is widely regarded as a founding father of Turkish contemporary art. Perhaps because he has spent most of his life outside Istanbul, however, the art establishment in the country’s most cosmopolitan city has mostly overlooked or ignored him. René Block and the curatorial collective WHW skillfully inserted a few of Çekil’s more incontestably brilliant works into the fourth and eleventh Istanbul biennials, respectively. But according to the curator and critic Necmi Sönmez, who wrote the text for the artist’s only existing monograph, “Cengiz Çekil remains the least known, least documented and [most] concealed artist (of Contemporary Turkish Art)” in the recent history of art in Turkey.

This rare solo show of Çekil’s work included paintings, sculptures, installations, and prints, but—as its curator, Vasif Kortun, noted in an interview—it merely scratched the surface

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