ART COLOGNE 2023
Anna Laudel Gallery | Ramazan Can and Cem Sonel
Anna Laudel is announcing its inaugural participation in Art Cologne, the world's oldest art fair, taking place from November 16th to 19th, 2023. Anna Laudel will feature the latest works by the Turkish contemporary artists Ramazan Can and Cem Sonel, offering a glimpse into the vibrant Turkish contemporary art scene. The collaborative artworks of Ramazan Can and Cem Sonel will be displayed at Anna Laudel’s Booth (Hall 11.2, Corridor A, nr 304) during the art fair.
Dating back to 1967, Art Cologne is the oldest art fair in the world. It gives space to more than one hundred galleries and their exceptional artists, bringing together important collectors and representatives of high-ranking institutions. Upholding the tradition of building a bridge from the Bosporus to Cologne, Anna Laudel will debut by representing Turkey at Art Cologne 2023.
This year the fair differentiates galleries into seven sectors: Contemporary, Modern/ Post-war, Collaborations, Neumarkt, Editions, Art + Object, and New Positions. Anna Laudel has been selected to showcase in the Collaborations sector, with the collaborative work of Ramazan Can and Cem Sonel, who utilize inventive approaches in multi-media dimensions.
Ramazan Can and Cem Sonel, All the Old Memories are Stored, 2023
The two artists base their research processes for the framework of their artistic expression on Derrida's critique of Logocentrism. Derrida argues that people’s way of thinking is almost exclusively determined by dichotomies, which in turn are to be understood as interdependent binary definitions like male-female, inside-outside, old-new, absence- presence.
The core of the joint sculpture by Ramazan Can and Cem Sonel artfully conveys the duality described by Derrida. In their artwork, the two artists meticulously combine contradictory materials like concrete, carpet, neon, and LED installation in harmony to reflect old and new, modern and traditional, forgotten crafts, and new technologies. Through their work, Can and Sonel provide a fresh perspective on long-standing customs, motifs, and culturally recognized patterns that portray Anatolian history.
Cem Sonel (left) and Ramazan Can (right)
Born in Manisa in 1988, Ramazan Can graduated from Gazi University, Faculty of Fine Arts, Department of Fine Arts Education in 2011. In 2015, he received his graduate degree in Painting at the Fine Arts Institute of Gazi University. He debuted with the solo show “Shamans and Demons” in 2015 at Gallery Foyart in Ankara. In the following year, two more exhibitions under the same theme were held in Ankara, both at Hotel Houston and Tilky Gallery. Can is in the present day continuing his education at Gazi University within the Fine Arts Institute, though within the Program of Sufficiency in the Arts. Working and living in Ankara, he is currently lecturing at the Painting Department of the Faculty of Fine Arts at Ankara Hacı Bayram Veli University. Shamanism and modern mysticism play a vital role in Can´s work. He draws from Anatolian motifs, yet, he maintains a somewhat distanced relationship with those motifs and discerns them from their historical context when combining them with neo-expressionist elements. His work spans from painting and collage to neon light works and sculpture and though, not political, one can read a certain narrative and commentary on history and modern society.
Cem Sonel is a versatile artist who was born in Ankara in 1985. He graduated from the Faculty of Fine Arts at Hacettepe University, receiving an honorary degree in 2009. His interest in street art led him to co-found the street art collective KÜF Project, with which he carried out guerrilla street art actions between 2009 and 2014 that received much attention in the mainstream media. In 2014, Cem Sonel was accepted into the Master's programme in Sculpture at the Institute of Fine Arts at Hacettepe University. His works have been on display at Berlin Art Week, Contemporary Istanbul, Sónar Festival and 48 Stunden Neukölln, among others. Cem Sonel presented his semi-digital façade installations at the "Mural Festival" in Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir. In 2022, he had his first solo exhibition entitled "One and Zero Makes Two" at Anna Laudel Gallery in Istanbul. He works and lives in Ankara.