On Ceramic and a Critical Approach to Social Phenomena with Aslı Aydemir
Aslı Aydemir is a particular artist who experimentally combines ceramic with alternative materials, endowing it with deep, sociopolitical concepts. Aydemir talked to us sincerely about her sources of inspiration and her dreams.
What are your main sources of inspiration?
The geography I live in and its social consequences, things I see, hear and that I actually don’t want to believe is real. I somehow reflect them and I cure myself with my practice. I can summarize my main topics as women, peace interests and belief systems.
Ceramic art is deeply rooted in these lands. Ancient times, Mesopotamia, etc… What are your thoughts on this subject?
The transition of ceramic from artisanal to the artistic realm doesn’t actually go that far back in history. This material with high plasticity that was considered as artisanal and industrial until mid-20th century, has become one of the most preferred media for contemporary artists.
Ceramic requires very high technical proficiency. What kind of educational process have you been through?
I graduated from Mimar Sinan University Faculty of Fine Art, Department of Ceramic and Glass Design in 2003. During and after my education period, I kept experimenting and researching techniques I was unfamiliar with, so that I could continue my relationship with the material on the correct platform. I followed the literature, and while doing that I exploited the blessings of the internet and closely examined ceramic design and artwork examples. I even mimicked some of the techniques I encountered. Thus I established a balance in my relationship with this capricious material. Ceramic continues to be my primary medium but I also use concrete, epoxy, plaster and metal. With every new material I also enjoy witnessing phases of collective production.
Your works are also highly critical: subjects like consumerism and devaluation of humans and labor are manifest in them. Where does your exhibition “İade-i İtibar” from last year stand in this picture?
“İade-i itibar” offers a socio-cultural perspective on the decorative function of Chinese blue-white porcelain figures in middle class homes. I aimed at creating a nostalgic emotion, both for me and the society I live in, by re-processing them with different materials, so that the value attributed to them by those living in those homes could find a true match.
The artists you regularly follow? Which authors do you read?
Frankly, since internet entered our lives, instead of following a specific artist I try to follow all the artists and designers within my reach and scope of interest. There are many of them whom I admire. A great example would be Johnson Tsang; he always impresses me with his mastership with porcelain and the subjects he tackles. In recent years, I have been mostly reading technical articles on materials relevant for my projects; but tales and short stories are my favorite literary genre. I think tales are very useful in understanding a society.
How did your path cross with Art50.net? Your thoughts on online platforms?
I find online platforms very positive and indispensable for our daily lives, and I even want their number to increase as much as it can. They offer great advantages to the viewer both in reaching the art and the artist. I became familiar with Art50.net thanks to a friend of mine and I regularly followed its activities as I’m an active internet user.
Any new projects on the horizon?
I currently have two projects that I initiated in 2017; both are related to social pressure and traumas. I can describe them as reflections my own emotional state as a female individual in this society.
Your biggest dreams on your profession and the world?
My dreams in both realms proceed on a parallel route. Living in a world with more justice and equality would let me create happier works with less criticism and would help me go back to a more peaceful psychological state. I hope that being productive in a world where we would all prosper and smile peacefully would be more joyful than our current situation.
Click for the artist’s page.