Heidi Trautmann

920: Visiting Ozan Özgenler’s Wonderland at EMAA’s in Nicosia

By Heidi Trautmann


There is a young man in Nicosia who strongly believes in the wonders of nature, in the good in people and from that belief he draws all the love he passes on to his students who came together with their parents to the exhibition of their teacher, his fan community. Friends and artists joined the crowd. EMAA’s garden was full and swinging with music and laughter when I arrived. Our President Mustafa Akıncı had come to open the 2nd solo exhibition of the young passionate artist and art teacher Ozan Özgenler.

With his paintings he establishes the bonds between nature and humans, he breaks open the receptacle of a flower and blows up the inner life, brings it forward to show its beauty, complexity and simplicity at the same time; is it not the same with humans? Superficially seen many don’t seem to have anything extraordinary to show but if you make an effort and use your eyes and heart to understand and observe than you will realize that there is much more to a personality. Humans don’t exist by themselves; they are bound to each other, connected to its immediate surroundings, also our past and future…..and with nature and from there with the universe. ‘Wonderland’ you can only discover when you try to be what you are trying to discover, one has to identify oneself with the other thing or being in order to understand.


I saw young children with Ozan’s catalogue in their hands studying the paintings on the walls and reading the title; they know Ozan very well because he is teaching them, also in what he believes. I saw their parents, learning new details about their children’s teacher, they discovered  the artist and his philosophy of life. However, I also saw an elderly gentleman, obviously a grandfather, and I stood next to him. You could see that he was not a happy man and he said: Look, everything is torn in these paintings, like our Cyprus, it is chaos,  that is what it is…. How can I see beauty when I know that there is chaos?

We talked for a while. Later I saw him talking to Ozan.

There is a Wonderland everywhere, we just have to go looking for it.

The exhibition is open until May 06. Viewing times at office hours. 

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