Yıldırım İnce: The Story of an Artist from Car Industry to Fine Arts and His Passion for Urban Life
Yıldırım İnce is an artist who carries the city’s soul into his canvases, giving it a new life. A fan of cars with a special bond to woswos. We had a great conversation with Yıldırım about his life story and his art.
When did you begin to produce art?
It happened after a dialogue I had with my high school painting teacher, becoming the start of an adventure following my teacher’s discovery of my ninterest in art. Another person who contributed to this adventure is my father. As he is a car painter, I spent all my spare time at his workshop and got to know the colors of those paints better, and all this gave me a desire to paint things and to become more interested in colors. Thus I tried to illustrate this interest in me with small painting experiments at the time.
Where does your deep passion for Woswos come from?
I could have worked on many other themes in my paintings but I chose the woswos, because cars were the symbol of where I grew up; they were part of my life. I spent my childhood working alongside my father and this allowed for my passion for cars to emerge. Later, when I started the art education program at Balıkesir University Faculty of Fine Arts, one of my professors had a woswos, while my entire passion for cars had evolved into an enthusiasm for woswos. My father and I took care of my professor’s car, its routine checks, paint and repair for a while. I think around a time in which people referred to it as a cute piece of metal, I established a bond with woswos with a very deep friendship and excitement. Altough I realized too late in my life that my real passion was the woswos, it now had an indispensable identity for me. I cannot spare these words for them; although known in society as a cute but problematic car, it is actually very durable; thanks to it you can become as well informed as a professional mechanic. It is a life style beyond people’s “oooh so cute” exclamations; it is indispensable, a friend, a soul, an identity, another world. It immediately adapts itself to its owner’s character. Most of them have a name. The solidarity among the owners is so moving. Woswos is a passion for its lover…
You describe the theme in your works as “urban mythology”. Can you explain this concept further?
Cities are not only places for living but also areas of imagery and representation; they are areas that stimulate creativity. The moving elements in an urban context, especially people and their activities, are as importasnt as static physical spaces. Thanks to the liberties in the realm of form, everything from the past, including pictures, light accessories, any daily life object can become part of the same composition. Thus the objects reproduced in the work of art replace the real ones and build a new urban mythology. The aim here is to turn the entire city into an objet d’art and to aestheticize its life style . While doing this, all our senses are in motion and the urban mythology is the combination of all of these elements. These objectives and processes lie at the heart of Post-modernism and how it generates a philosophical departure point with a heavily architectural and urban context.
And the artists from Turkey or abroad that you particularly like, follow and are curious about?
The first that comes to my mind that I follow with a great enthusiasm is the American artist Don Eddy, one of the masters of photorealism and the artist I find closest to my own approach. Luis Perez, another photorealist artist from Spain comes second. I can also mention Kamalky Laureano from Mexico, David Earle from the U.S.A. and Manu Campa from Spain as the other atists I’m interested in following.
As an artist interested in the notion of metropolis, when did you first visit Istanbul? How did the city change since then? How is your experience of the city?
I first came to İstanbul in 2006. Although I defined it as a metropolis, this changed as time passed. Because for me, it is a megalopolis. A metropolis in a country dominates the urban and rural settlements around itself both economically and socially, and it also establishes the country’s connection with other countries. For instance, New York is one of the world’s leading metropolises. But a megalopolis is a settlement composed by the unhealthy growth of several settlements finally becoming united, a gigantic city. For me, Istanbul is as such; its growth is unstoppable, and it connects various cities, becoming one single huge city with an unhealthy growth. Honestly, earlier I found Istanbul intimidating; but in time, I had a different bond to it. I probably had the chance to know the city better and I began to love it as I got to know it better. In my artistic journey all the roads led to Istanbul as well, I couldn’t deny it; and I decided to keep up with it.
The cities you would like to visit?
Of course I would have liked to visit all the important ones in the world but my priority would be the American ones: Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Boston, Washington, D.C etc. But I particularly would like to visit New York: it has a very different place in my heart, I have a nostalgia for it. This nostalgia can be explicitly seen in my works. Except for Istanbul, of course, there has not been a city that I have visited and impressed me so far…
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