Heidi Trautmann

970: Ceren Selmanpakoğlu – Art Exhibition ‘Wizards of Shit’ at SOL Atelier-Exhibition Hall Nicosia

25 January – 09 February 2018 

By Heidi Trautmann


WOW… I can only say, or HA, but no, THANK YOU, for showing Ceren Selmanpakoğlu work in Nicosia in the beautiful SOL Atelier in Pafos Sokak.

I like the irony of it; you can make art from anything…

I looked the artist’s work up on the internet – quite impressive – and I advise to read her comment on her working style, it gives you an idea of what she is after.

Art must not be big or spectacular, it must surprise me and must be well done. These clay sculptures, kneaded, beaten into form, represent all kind of human moods. Don’t we sometimes say: I feel like shit?”

Well done.

Unfortunately the exhibition has closed now but I did not want to let it go unmentioned.  

The place as such is fantastic and a good example for how the old houses, the ruins should be restored, with a lot of understanding and feeling for the environment, of the Old City.



1977, Ankara

I graduated from Hacettepe University, Department of Ceramics in 1999. However, my interest in art grew before collage. I became interested in various fields of art including stage and video. I always considered each medium a part of a whole.

My first solo exhibition “Body within ‘which’” (2002) comprised sculpture, video, drawing and a performance. Later, I considered this exhibition rather aesthetic than artistic. Still, I find it pleasing to publicly initiate my art with the presentation of my own body. My second solo exhibition “Souvenir” (2004), as the title suggests, comprised sculpturesk objects with the only purpose to sell appealing objects, which I accomplished.

In 2006 at Bilkent University I wrote a Master’s thesis titled “The Formation of Alevi Syncretism”, which later in 2008 became the basis of my third solo exhibition “Imaging Fire.” In this exhibition, while depicting the relation between human and ‘God’ concept through Alevi doctrine, I also raised a critical point of view on how Alevism is perceived within itself and in Turkey. In 2009, with same critical departing point, I prepared a special photography series for Hacıbektaş Journal’s special issue of “800th Year of Birth of Hacı Bektaş Veli”, where I focused on natural religions as the foundation of Alevism.

In 2010, as an alternative project, I opened my forth solo exhibition “Don’t Prescribe Me!” at my own studio for only one day. With the photographs, installations and a video I correlated Anatolian traditional head-scarf 'yazma'with the nudity of body and plainness of nature. Also in 2010, with my installations in the exhibition at Clayarch Gimhae Museum in South Korea -as a part of artist in residency program that I participated in for three months- I depicted religion’s political, consequently dominating structure.

My work have been exhibited in various group exhibitions, particularly in the ones curated by Denizhan Özer, including, “Where is my Privacy?”, TUYAP Istanbul Art Fair, Çanakkale Biennial, “I Don’t Want This”, Artisterium, "Dikkat! Kadın".

In 2013 I finally completed my PhD dissertation “Agent Art: Freedom of Nothingness”, which I have been working on since 2007, and in 2014 it has been published as a book, by Ayrıntı Publising. April, 2015

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