Kinetic sculptures in Kadıköy, Yeldeğirmeni
Who is Eda Taşlı, can you tell us about yourself?
I was born in Istanbul in 1978. After graduating from Kocaeli University Faculty of Fine Arts Department of Photography in 1999, I entered Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University Department of Sculpture in 2004, and graduated from the wood atelier in 2013.
What made you decide to pursue sculpture after photography?
While I was studying photography and taking photographs, I would always do constructs, like shaping a friend like a flower, etc. Meaning that I would use my hands to shape things, I always had the desire but I wasn’t quite aware of it. I was also drawing. As part of my job, I would take photographs in sports games and then I would draw like crazy. Actually I didn’t intend to attend another school but I was also not content. One night my brother saw how unhappy I was and asked, “What is your thing dude, you look so miserable.” So I told him that I wanted to enter Mimar Sinan Department of Sculpture very much but it sounded like a dream. And he said, are you crazy, why don’t you do it, and the whole family supported the idea. That night when I went to bed I was so excited that I couldn’t sleep; it was a wonderful night…. The next day I was late for work and everyone was surprised of course but I explained the situation, and told them that I was leaving. I came home that day and didn’t leave until the exams, and I kept drawing.
There are other three dimensional disciplines like industrial design. Why did you prefer sculpture?
Because you work with materials...
Industrial design also works with materials, infinite possibilities...
But when you are studying industrial design at school, they don’t show you those infinite material choices while in Sculpture you handle the material. You take the clay, the stone or the wood and get to work on it immediately.
Kinetic sculpture is not commonly heard in Turkey. For those who don’t know, what is Kinetic Sculpture?
Movement as the starting point of kinetic sculpture is actually widely known in the world. They are called mobile abroad but here people understand something else. Mobile obviously refers to movement but it doesn’t necessarily require a mechanism. Sculptures consisting of deconstructed parts are also a kind of kinetic sculpture.
What is the source of this idea for you, how do you start creating a kinetic sculpture?
To give you an example, I had made a walking bed based on a dream I had. In the dream I was on a walking bed, and when I woke up I started thinking about how I could do it and I began to make it. Sometimes it is improvised; for instance I create a character, then I think that we need something to place a mechanism underneath it. Then I think about the base, and when I solve that I build a mechanism to move it. Then I think it should move something else, and for example I add wings, and in this manner I can add infinite elements. It’s in fact unending, like movement.
Can you display your works anywhere? Are people interested?
Yes, they are. I open my exhibitions on social media so people see the works on etsy.com, Facebook and Instagram, etc. Sometimes people want to commission special works so I do custom designs too.
What are your sources of inspiration?
I love children’s books. I also love the illustrations of Roger Olmos. There is this book “What Hurts Most” which has great illustrations. I love tales too, and I am very much influenced by tales and dreams. There is a Turkish compilation of Ursula Le Guin’s articles and essays called “Women, Tales and Dragons” that I really loved. Freud’s student Gustav Jung is one of my favorites. I always have this desire to analyze the subconscious; therefore I keep creating different characters with layers on top of layers. Self on top, ego underneath… The self is small, the ego huge.