Museum Exhibition Catalogues, Monographs, Artist's Projects, Curatorial Writings and Essays
"To me, observing one of Taner's paintings means opening to a new vision of the world. And the more precise this vision is, all the more personal and surprising it will be, as if the artist's vision, in order to express its personality, did not need to tower over reality, or to subvert it, but simply to get it into better focus." Ferzan Özpetek, excerpted from God is in the Details: Taner Ceylan's Paintings in Taner Ceylan: 1997-2009.
Published by Damiani/Standard Press/Paul Kasmin Gallery. Text by Cüneyt Çakirlar, Dan Cameron, Serkan Delice.
Well known for his provocative realist paintings, Taner Ceylan (born 1967) began his Lost Paintings Series as a contemporary exploration of the Orientalist gaze. Upsetting both Western and Eastern master narratives, the Lost Paintings Series presents Eastern figures in a fascinating navigation of history, power and narrative. “Esma Sultan,” Ceylan’s depiction of an eighteenth-century Ottoman princess renowned for her cruel disposition, draws on the empowering mythology of passionate, ruthless and assertive womanhood that characterizes accounts of her life. In other works, an Ottoman man gazes defiantly, cigarette in hand; a pair of male lovers give a chaste farewell; a veiled woman stands before Courbet’s “L’Origine du monde.” Ceylan assembles a cast of lost characters and voices that embody the many silenced by both Orientalist and official nationalist histories. The book is published on the occasion of Ceylan’s exhibition The Lost Paintings Series at the Paul Kasmin Gallery in New York.
Published by Damiani. Foreword by Ferzan Özpetek. Text by Dan Cameron.
One of Turkey's most prominent artists, Taner Ceylan makes hyperrealist paintings that bespeak absolute technical mastery and precision, but which are also freighted with an emotional and sexual dimension usually absent from the genre--qualities that have set him apart from the prevailing tendencies in contemporary Turkish art, and which at times have also brought him outright abuse in the press. Ceylan's paintings occupy a register somewhere between the mutely homoerotic (as in his portrait of a bloodied and perspiring boxer--possibly an allegory of the artist's own trials) and the overtly sexual (to enter his website “you must be at least 18 years of age” ). Curator Dan Cameron, who has championed the painter, orients him in a tradition of sexually explicit art stemming from Robert Mapplethorpe to Jeff Koons, but points out that the implicit argument of Celyan's work is “a romantic arguing for the wholesomeness of gay male sexuality.”