Five questions to Pınar Civan

Five questions to Pınar Civan

Pınar Civan was born in Istanbul in 1975. She lives and works in her studios in Paris and Bern. Pınar is a multi discipline artist. Although her academic background is political science she always worked as an artist.Why did you become an artist?

I don’t think that anybody decides to become an artist. I wanted to tell stories as I see them and I didn’t know how not to tell them. So I danced, I wrote, I took photos and I painted since I was a kid. But It took me some time to finally to be able to say I want to only paint now and I want to do nothing else but paint.

When you create a new work, how do you go about it? What comes first?

I work intuitively and I don’t usually sketch. You can observe in my works that I have all this energy waiting to come out. And I don’t try to tame this energy. I let it go as freely as possible. There is this exciting ritual of sitting across from the empty canvas for as long as it takes before finally putting a finger on what I want to tell on that empty space and how I want to tell it. Most of the times I talk to myself, there are poems or songs or some sentences that are stuck in my head and they find their way on the canvas eventually. I look into myself, I listen to my emotions and then I go with the flow intuitively. What can you tell us about your studio, what makes it special to you and how does it influence the way you work?

I believe in love at first sight when I see a studio or a space. This was love at first sight. I have to admit it’s not big enough for all my work but it has great light and I have musician neighbors, their practice motivates my creativity and I have this lovely park just around the corner (and also my favorite ice cream spot) where I can take my painting outdoors when I am in the mood. Is there a work of art in your life that has especially impressed you?

As like most of us I am mesmerized by certain art works, some of them are so beautiful they almost make me cry out of joy. So this is a hard one to pick but I remember as a small girl seeing Marc Chagall’s Blue Circus and being hypnotized and I carried that feeling with me all those years.

Reach to the stars: where will you be in 5 years?

I will be painting. I don’t want to think about the “success” or make plans to achieve success. All I want to do is to paint till the end. Audre Lorde says “I am going to write fire until it comes out of my ears, my eyes, my noseholes--everywhere. Until it's every breath I breathe.” For me that’s to paint.Learn more about the artist: