NIHAL KECECI About
When Nihal Kececi was 13, her first art exhibition made her a local celebrity in her small town in Turkey. Though she attended one year of visual art school, she also felt a pull toward the sciences, and against her parents__™ wishes, decided to pursue a degree in physics. After receiving a bachelor__™s degree in physics and a master__™s degree in Nuclear Engineering, Ms. Nihal began her professional life as a design engineer in Turkey.
An opportunity to work as a research associate at the University of Maryland brought Nihal and her ten-year-old daughter to the United States in 1997. They then moved to Canada when Nihal was offered a position at the University of Montreal__"Quebec. From 1997-2004 she worked as a software analyst in USA and Canada. Though she frequently visited art galleries, Ms. Nihal did not begin drawing again until 2001, after a 27-year hiatus. From 2001-2004, she spent her time equally between technical projects and painting. A turning point for the artist came in 2003 when a professor who purchased four of her paintings told her, ___Nihal, there are many engineers, but not artists. Your contribution to society as an artist will be greater than as an engineer.___ Since 2004, Nihal has been painting full time, working in pastel, oil and acrylic.
Nihal Kececi's paintings are explorations of color inspired by immediate sensory impressions. She presents "abstract landscapes" whose markers are bursts of sunlight confronting shadow, with gold and silver light flowering from the depths of dark background. Her subject matter is often the tranquility of private individual moments, as well as shared instances of ecstasy and pleasure. Bypassing the controlling mind, she uses light and shadow equally to present her subjects, as well as colors that play upon the eye as saturated light, framed by deep browns and stony blues, invoking both the beautiful anarchy of nature as well as the order naturally imposed on sensations by the human brain. Her work strikes a balance between structure and energy, especially in her portraits, where she reveals figures in intimate moments while also maintaining a sense of enigma. Her subjects are clear via gestures suggesting varying emotional states, and yet still they remain mysteries. This dichotomy is key--the fine balance between revealing and withholding, a mood especially true of her nudes, in which an unavoidable melancholy pervades. Whether portraying the ecstatic moments of whirling dervishes, dramatic landscapes or quiet domestic scenes, Nihal Kececi has staked a claim to her own territory, one that brings silence as well as poetry to the visual world she has captured.
Luminous colors, painterly brushstrokes, and an intimate gaze characterize the subtle
elegance of Nihal Kececi__™s figurative and landscape paintings. Bridging the gap between abstraction and representation, Kececi incorporates richly textured surfaces with ambiguous areas of complex hues. Kececi__™s romantic visions and intense color palette draw on her cultural background, while her discerning eye and innovative approach point directly to her scientific research and interests. Despite the representational aspect of her paintings, Kececi intends for her works to depict not the scenes from everyday life, but the universal emotions, ideas, and concepts that drive her to create as an artist. Just as the artist__™s work has been shaped by her personal experiences, her life has been shaped by her deep relationship with painting. By intertwining the uniquely individual with the distinctly universal, Kececi produces works that speak to a wide audience, appealing not only for their aesthetic beauty, but for their transcendental themes. Born in Turkey, Nihal Kececi now lives and works in Maryland USA
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