Tulya, a rising Grade 11, is showing selected photographs in her first individual public exhibition in Istanbul. (She has been part of 3 group exhibits over the past 3 years). Sponsored by The Limen Project and the Rahmi Koç Museum, the photographs span 7 ports in 3 countries which border the Black Sea. The display is part of a much larger Limen Project, whose aim is "to contribute to the development of cultural tourism in the wider region of the Black Sea."
Here is Tulya's story of how she came to be involved, in her own words:
Then they continued for my father’s architecture project. They were designing a bank together and they needed a bird photo for covering up a big window. They found one from the Internet and Enis tried to call the photographer and buy it. He couldn’t reach him. Then I sent a photo of a bird that I took in ARAS CIP (a Community Involvement Project for school) to my father. He sent that to Enis.
Enis: "Oh why did we try to buy the other one? This one is way better, we should buy this one."
My dad (laughing): "Oh what are you talking about? We won’t buy it because it is my daughter’s photo."
Enis was amazed and convinced that I was a good photographer by the end of that project.
One month ago when I was in Chicago, I received a text message from him (Enis) asking if I would travel 5 countries with him taking photographs for a project. My answer was of course "yes" but it was a "double yes" when I learned that two prestigious universities (KOÇ and Istanbul Universities) and the European Union were in it because I am only 17 and I couldn’t even dream about working for them.
I took my backpack – camera – tripod and was ready to travel! My dream was coming true, traveling with a backpack and taking photographs. This was what I want to be in the future. So we traveled to 5 countries in 2-3 weeks and tried to finish up everything. But most of the time the schedule wasn’t planned well. We were arriving in a city at 5 am and didn’t know where to stay. We were meeting with new people every day. ... I was so stressed because it was my duty to take photographs for an exhibition and I wanted all of them to express me.
I designed the posters, invitation cards and edited the photographs in the last 3 days, I was so stressed and messed up but last night (the opening) I forgot all of it because of being there with the people I love and them supporting me; it was unbelievable. It was better than what I have imagined."
Here is a student who has blended an artistic eye, and a very good one, with an energy for her work to be seen and appreciated. May I say she has combined art and business? If such a mixture was good enough for the artists of the Italian Renaissance, why have we as a culture separated the two ideas? Tulya: well done on the work you have put into creating the photographs you have, and further kudos for "getting yourself out there".
You may view works by Tulya either by visiting the exhibit at the Rahmi Koç Museum (poster linked above) or by viewing some of her work online here. I understand that Tulya is starting to create a website and look forward to it being online in the near future.
She is one student of many who will be well served by entering the "real world" before leaving high school. I do hope it is a trend.