A Pleasant Conversation with Hülya Şekercioğlu

Dear Friends

I took a break from writing for a while. You have no doubt guessed why. After the February 6 earthquake, the disaster of the century that our beautiful country experienced, frankly speaking, I gave myself to aid on the one hand and to art on the other. We were not in the earthquake zone and it is not possible for us to experience that trauma as much as our citizens there, but since February 6, I have barely been able to clear my head and sit in front of my computer.

About a week before the earthquake, I had a pleasant interview with my dear friend Hülya, who organizes painting exhibitions at Four Seasons Istanbul.

In one of my previous articles, I wrote about famous hotels around the world that value and support the arts. However, since Four Seasons Bosphorus a special place for me, I wanted to publish this interview in a separate article.


If you ask why Four Seasons Bosphorus Hotel is important for me, since I have been a contracted artist of this beautiful hotel for years, my works are exhibited on rotation. Four Seasons Bosphorus is one of the rare hotels in Turkey that really supports the arts. Of course, Dear Hülya Şekercioğlu, whose signature is under this beautiful project, has contributed a great deal. There is no other art advisor in Turkey who can bring both new and famous painters together on the same platform. When I hear the name Hülya Şekercioğlu, I feel like a part of a huge art family.

Now it’s time for our delightful interview

Can you tell us about the art activities at Four Seasons Bosphorus?

At Four Seasons, we have been organizing a group exhibition every three months for about 4 years to support Turkish artists and introduce them to our foreign guests. In our hotel, an average of 120-130 works in different disciplines are exhibited in each exhibition. We try to organize one solo exhibition every year. We have sold to 23 countries so far and I am proud to say that this is a great success both for us and for our artists.

What do you think it would be like if the digital visuals of the artworks at Four Seasons Bosphorus were also shown on the screens in visitors’ hotel rooms?

I am aware that digital is a part of our lives, so a special shot was made for this and a video in this style has been shown to our guests in the rooms for a long time. At the same time, the screens inside the hotel are also showing promotions on this topic at intervals.

You have a gallery at Le Meridien Hotel in Istanbul. What is the goal of this project?

Yes, Le Meridien Hotel, just like Four Seasons Bosphorus, appeals to a profile with a high taste in art. The place we have opened here is quite different. It is a project that we aim to both promote Turkish art and carry the artists we work with to fairs. In a new generation gallery concept where solo exhibitions are on our agenda every two months

What do you think about commissioned art? Do you have projects with artists in this concept?

Of course, artists can take different attitudes towards commissioned work depending on the level of freedom and creative control they are given. Some artists see commissioned work as an enjoyable opportunity and are eager to make such work, but this eagerness to exist sometimes leads to an environment where ethics are ignored and art is destroyed, and unfortunately many people are not aware of this situation. So much so that those who have the syndrome of matching the color of my house, delusions that my psychology is badly affected, requests to copy the other artist 21. may go down in history as the contemporary art shame of the century. Today, the artist’s creativity is spent more on the originality of ‘self-presentation’ than on the work of art. In other words, the artist can exist with himself, with marketing himself, rather than with what he produces. They are or have been reduced to being presented as commercial objects. That’s why I approach commissioned art a little more cautiously. I am not collaborating with any artist on such a matter at the moment.

Which well-known artists’ works are featured at Four Seasons Bosphorus?

We currently have Mehmet Sinan Kuran, Seçil Erel, Bedri Baykam, İsmet Doğan, Ahmet Nejat, Erdil Yaşaroğlu, Murat Germen, Erkan Yaprakkıran, Ali Alışır, Evren Erol, Pınar Dupre, Mahmut Aydın, Gazi Şansoy, Bahri Genç, Ercan Akın, Nil Büyükbayraktar, Şükrü Karakuş, David Gershtein and of course Emre Erturk and dozens of other artists.


What would you tell us about the importance of painting and sculpture in the emerging field of gastronomy in Turkey?

Gastronomy is a branch that has a relationship with many different disciplines from health sciences to technology, from science to humanities and social sciences in the process of food from soil to table. Another discipline where gastronomy intersects is, of course, always art. The discovery of the aesthetic dimension of taste and visuality has made the effort to reveal beauty in the food system increasingly important, and as a result, gastronomy has become a field related to art. “Food can appeal to our aesthetic senses just like a work of art,” says Roland Barthes, who likens the food tray to a painting. If there is art in everything you can think of, why not food? It is possible to look for art in food and food in art, to find each in the other. Food is a subject of sociology and art as well as culture. It is both inspiration and art itself. The inspiration of food for art is as old as human history. One of the most powerful themes of literary and artistic production throughout history. The difference between food and other arts is that it is consumed and therefore constantly renews itself. The kitchen is always on stage. There is art in every table, a story hidden in every plate.

Do you think being a brand in gastronomy is only about flavor and presentation?

Being a brand in gastronomy lies in the sustainability of flavor and presentation together. Otherwise, unfortunately, we end up with works that are known by a certain circle and do not last long.

Do you think that if the decoration of our hotels and the experiences they want to offer gain character and style with painting and sculpture, would it contribute to the a-plus vip tourists who go to other countries to come to our country?

I wish art alone was enough, but in today’s conjuncture, I honestly don’t think so….


The most expensive marble floor, the most expensive table, but there are no paintings on the wall that make up the style of the house, do you think that house has a soul?

Every branch of art that is designed and practiced has a very high impact on the spaces we live in. Art not only adds visual aesthetics, a new dimension, a different language, taste and texture to a space, but also gives it a new life, personality and a memory that makes it easier to identify it. Whether a work of art is one-dimensional like a painting, three-dimensional like a sculpture, or a moving digital work, it always creates harmony and fluidity in defining and understanding space, and in sustaining life in it.

Which is your favorite restaurant in Istanbul?

Kebapçı Asker Usta, which recently opened its branch in Maslak auto industry from Adana to Istanbul, is a secret address that I love very much these days.

Louis Vuitton and Yayoi Kusama renew their collaboration. What are your thoughts on this cooperation?

Yes; the collaboration between the Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama and the French fashion house Louis Vuitton has been one of the most popular events of the recent period in the fashion world. At 93 years old and living in a psychiatric clinic in Tokyo for 40 years at her own request, I wonder how aware Kusama is of everything that is being sold in her name today and who signed this collaboration on her behalf.

Nardugan blog sayfasi

But apart from that, I can say that what comes out of this collaboration is: the impact of the power of technology on art; the contribution of art to fashion; artist-brand collaborations; the filters artists use when juxtaposing their works or names with brands; the ‘price’ of the work and the artist; the approach of the spirit of the time to luxury fashion and art.

Where do you think Turkish brands are in terms of creativity? When will art and fashion join hands as they do abroad?

I don’t know if we have creativity, but imitation is everywhere. Instead of exploring and discovering new things, everyone has a phone in their hands and they do not go beyond applying what they see on social media.

In fact, there is no need to rediscover America, it would be great if we could research what the brands in the world are doing, how differences can be brought based on what these countries have found, and if they can be combined with art in a properly original way and applied.

I would like to thank dear Hülya Şekercioğlu for this beautiful interview.

See you in my next article, stay with love and happiness….

Emre Ertürk 300 × 300 px 1

Thanks to Pavos Digital for the shots

Sharing is Caring

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

From Emre Erturk's Pen...