By Heidi Trautmann
A text by FWA – Foundation for Women’s Art – says in 1997: “Fifty years after her ground-breaking entrance into the patriarchal art scene, Hélène Deguel, the president of UFACSI, is still fighting every inch of the way for public recognition of known and unknown female artists. One of UFACSI’s maxims is to discover, promote and morally support young talented artists, sculptors, engravers, musicians, poets and other artists. What is UFACSI we can hear you say? It is the “Union Feminine, Artistique et Culturelle - Salons Internationaux, and the catalyst for its origination in 1947 was when Hélène Deguel, along with two women artists transgressed the boundaries of male-dominated art circles, to create their own space.”
In Tunesia I believe it was. Aylin Örek is the coordinator here in North Cyprus. She and a group of women artists were received by President Dervis Eroglu and the founder president Rauf Denktas on the occasion of the opening of the Ufacsi international art exhibition on May 23 at the Bedesten in Nicosia. It is not very often you can see Aylin Örek’s paintings and she hardly goes public anymore so I was very happy to see some of her paintings. She was a fantastic art teacher as I have heard from so many, and her themes in painting are Cypriot social scenes. For me they have a touch of caricature and irony, the funny side of life, even trees seem to bend over from laughter.
It certainly is a very important event to have international art associations come here, but I missed some young talents, young and fresh ideas, as it is pronounced in the foreword of FWA. It rather looks as if works from old archives have been brought forward, most probably a migrating exhibition bringing together female artists from several countries such as Germany, Holland, France, Turkey.
I was surprised that the Bedesten has now opened as a gallery with a number of iron frames installed across the room to hang pictures. There is also a very attentive and helpful person watching over the place. This place should be used more.
The exhibition will be open until June 3, open from 9.00am -12 noon and 2.00pm -6pm. Sunday closed.