UCA Farnham Fine Art Student Profile 2014 – Merve Emiroglu

What are the main themes you have explored in your work and why are they important to you?

I have looked into several different themes on memory through the varied practices of artists, writers and philosophers. In particular I have used of many objects such as souvenirs, ornaments and toys in my work, as they tend to play a very central part in evoking memory. It’s this use and our deep association with objects that appeals. The associations that we imbue with object is expandable, in that it does not follow a constant pattern or path as our individual and collective memories differ by period, culture, and location. Memories can be divided into many layers where some of these can be easily identified through our habits, customs and aspirations and some can be quite complex to interconnect with as these represent the surreal and unknown.

I test different methods by combining painting with objects to create juxtapositions. In these instances I am exposing myself to the unknown and unexpected and really have no expectation of what I will find other than arising to the conclusion that it’s another possibility, another way to interpret a memory.

Some of my paintings came about in response to ornaments which then is displayed in line with the painting. This was suggested to me by some of my tutors and also by a visiting artist Susan Collis during my tutorial with her. For example the ornaments come as a set and acquired through an antique shop in Istanbul. The objects were once popular, now losing their popularity, and attaining a different kind of status based on shifts in taste, but they are also evocative of another time and our associations with this, particularly for me. 

Also I have been making my own objects using confectionary wrappers that came about reading Socrates and how he explains memory. It is the way that is been said influenced me to make these. I love the poetic and simple language of Socrates. He explains how we remember things. He says in summary that we all make an imprint of the version of the most significant part of what ever we want to remember. From that point on however we feel and experience that we take an imprint and remember or recall later on. It is our version and it would be different for others. This made me think about how I could use objects to represent memories and then imprint them on the foils, as they will evoke a familiar sensation. They all been an imprint of a same ornament, but using different colours of confectionary wrappers, the pressure applied to imprint and the size of the foils used make them look unique and different then one another.

What do you think is the most significant thing that has helped you during your time a UCA Farnham?

There has been many factors combined made my development process possible. But most important factor is the interaction with tutors, one to one tutorials, reading (researching) and preparing presentations. Having a regular contact with tutors and artists has been vital in terms of development and understanding of my practice.

What did you learn from the process of producing your Farnham exhibition?

I think two things. Less is more!  To be more confident in myself and practice.

What are you planning next?

I would like to develop my practice and carry on making work. I am looking for a studio space that will enable me to make works without limitations.

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