Retired colonel paints with Turkish coffee residue
by İklim Arsiya
Oct 18, 2014 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by İklim Arsiya
Oct 18, 2014 12:00 am
Paintings with coffee are not exactly unheard of, but what distinguishes Ekrem Baloğlu from other painters that work with coffee, is that he uses the residue left at the bottom of a cup of Turkish coffee. Baloğlu spent a great deal of his life as a colonel in the military. After retiring, he spends time at home creating unique abstract art pieces with coffee residue. Baloğlu, with the help of his children, has recently opened an exhibition to showcase and sell his two-year collection of coffee residue and watercolor landscape paintings.
Writer and poet Yalvaç Ural and photographer İbrahim Zaman were two of the names that attended the opening of the exhibition on Sunday Oct. 12.
For those art lovers out there, Ekrem Baloğlu's exhibition will be showcased until Oct. 26, 2014 at Atölye Silis Vitrin in Tarabya/Istanbul.
We got the chance to interview Ekrem Baloğlu to learn more about his special paintings.
What is your creative process like?
First of all, I'm not a professional painter. I'm just a person who loves to play around with colors. I started painting at the recommendation of my children. I do not plan ahead for any of my paintings – I just pick up my brush and mess around with colors. I find that when I look at my finished paintings, I see that they are things that I thought of when I was young.
How did you find out you could paint using coffee residue?
It was a total coincidence. I was drinking coffee one morning when I spilled it over my newspaper. It gave me inspiration. I can shape the coffee residue into different shapes and then color them. They are all unique figures that don't have a second similar one.
What does painting mean to you, how does it make you feel?
Painting to me means being one with nature. I see it as a show of appreciation and love for nature and people. When I paint, I making good use out of my time and also I feel as though I am preventing myself from aging.
How long did it take you to accumulate all the pieces in your exhibition?
These paintings are a two-year collection. I don't leave the house much and especially in the winter months it's a great time to paint. There is no such thing as a finished painting. I find that, notably in watercolor paintings, there is always something that can be added or changed about it. The pieces in my exhibition have been checked up on more than once.
This is your first exhibition; can we expect to see more of your work?
Opening up an exhibition was not my idea, it was my childrens'. Before this I would just put aside my paintings and give them to people who wanted them. Then my children told me to save them for an exhibition, so everyone who wants to see them can. I will continue to paint until I am no longer able to hold a brush anymore, but it is up to my children to open up my next exhibition.
Do you plan on selling your paintings?
As I said before, I would give my paintings to people that wanted them. But now we have decided to sell them at an appropriate price. The money that is obtained from the exhibition will be put forth to support a student of mine that is in need.