Nazif Topçuoglu has completed two Masters degrees, in Photography (the Institute of Design, Chicago ) and in Architecture (MEU, Ankara ). Exhibited widely and held teaching positions at various universities in Turkey. He writes regularly on the history and criticism of photography, and has published three books on the subject. Occasionally does advertising and editorial work.
Bahçesehir University, Istanbul, Turkey.
2007 Spring Term
at Sabanci University, Istanbul, Turkey.
On no days of our childhood did we live so fully perhaps as those we thought we had left behind without living them, those that we spent with a favourite book.
M. Proust, On Reading
The underlying thread in my work is a constant preoccupation with time, memory and loss. I worry about the transience of people and things in general, and try to reconstruct unclear and imperfect images of an idealized past. Such an attempt inevitably requires the ability to recapture past, hence my constant art-historical references to classic paintings and photographs as well as to authors such as Proust and Thomas Mann. Hence I have no problems with my images becoming visually seductive in the process. Another and more specific aspect of the recent Readers, is its pre-occupation with the contradicting positions of women in Turkey. When employing the representations of youth as imagery, one has to deal with the issues of gender roles and male gaze. In these photographs, unlike the more common examples, a respectful stance towards the female has been taken. The subjectification of the female youth as a gender-free ideal, inevitably involves her intelligence, beauty, energy, and struggle as the major concerns of this work I do photography because… I need to produce the images which are provocative but not exploitative that I would enjoy looking at.
Boghossian Foundation, Belgium
Salsali Private Museum, Dubai, UAE
JPMorgan Chase, USA
Marion and Guy Naggar, London, UK
Sema and Barbaros Çaga, Istanbul
Fotocollectie Hoboken Erasmus University,
Reflex Miniature Museum
of Contemporary Art,