IB Visual Arts Exhibition: Dilara Lal Altaylar

  1. Lost in the Moment

Watercolor and colored pencils on paper

50×70 cm

This work is inspired by people’s overthinking of their past mistakes and missing the opportunities offered to them by today. The time is running so fast that they get old without seizing the moment while alienating from the outside world and themselves. The hourglass and the decay of the figure symbolize people’s alienation from their identities due to trying to get rid of their past mistakes they cannot change. The clock in the background with a distorted shape represents how fast time passes.

2. Déjà vu

Acrylic on canvas

35×50 cm ×3

These paintings show the distortion of linearity of time, in which the person loses his/her understanding of the past and present, which is also called déjà vu. After searching for the scientific and theoretical explanation behind this state of mind, I gathered the feeling of estrangement felt during déjà vu with the reasons lying behind it such as the split perception theory, dominant eye theory, and epilepsy. I used cool and analogous colors with a monochromatic background to create a sense of spirituality.

3. Under Pressure

Sewing and acrylic on canvas

100×120 cm

A nation’s past forms its culture which influences the personalities and habits of its citizens. In the society I live in, people are expected to act based on the social norms determined by Turkish culture. As a person who doesn’t fit in those norms, I wanted to reflect the cultural pressure exerted on people. I sewed a traditional Turkish lace and made hand-embroidery, stiffened them giving the shape of a human face. I sewed traditional needlework on the edges of Turkish traditional fabrics I draped, which come out of the stiffened face and symbolize the suppressed ideas of citizens.

4. History of Women

Charcoal and coffee on paper

70×100 cm

The preliminary intention of this piece is showing the struggles women have been through during the women’s rights movements and the comparison of the past with present. Inspired by my country’s withdrawal from Istanbul convention, I was inspired to reflect the history of women and their movement. In order to give the drawing a vintage look, I used coffee, a cultural element, as painting material.

5. Dark Sides of Marriages

Markers and color pencils on paper

100×55 cm

Inspired by the past and culture of country, I designed a collection offering criticism for the dark sides of marriages including rapes, femicides, child marriages, and beating women, which are common social issues in my country. I juxtaposed the social issues with the Turkish concept “çeyiz” and its authentic aesthetics. Through the experimentation with colors, for of materials, and silhouettes, I aimed to attract attention to abuse of women.

6. The Subconscious Mind

Charcoal and watercolor on paper

42×30 cm

This artwork is influenced by Oğuz Atay’s short story titled “The Forgotten”. I aimed to dig into my past including my memories, fears, and pleasures that I have been trying to hide in my subconscious mind. The dusty room in the drawing symbolizes my mind, which is an allusion to the short story. I drew various objects as symbolism that sheds light to my past. The black-to-white color scheme creates a sense of flashback, which is contrasted with the vivid colors of the brains representing the active state of mind.

7. Raped

Sewing and photography

4928×3264 pixels ×3

I was inspired by the past of a friend of mine who got raped at a young age and was forced to marry the rapist to “protect” the reputation of her family. After learning her distressing story, I felt an urge to reflect this inhumane situation in the form of an artwork. I designed a dress that would be considered “provocative” if worn here outside. To give the garment a damaged look, I ripped the edges of the fabrics. I sewed traditional hand-embroidery with flower motifs and used it to cover the exposed body parts of the model.