Ceramic 'Çini' Plate 'Tulip Bouquet'
Mehmet Gürsoy: The Next Great Master
"In the far future, when my great friend Mehmet is an old man, some student of art will come to Kütahya and write a book with him as its hero."
Thus ends one of the sections of a monumental study of Turkish folk art titled Turkish Traditional Art Today by Henry Glassie, professor of folklore and Co-Director of Turkish Studies at Indiana University. The sentence is a reference to the great 20th century çini master Ahmet Sahin, who one day told the author that the author should write a book about Turkish art with Ahmet Sahin as its hero. According to almost every student of Turkish ceramics, Ahmet Sahin, born in 1907, single-handedly kept the art of fine çini-making alive not only in Kütahya, but in entire Turkey and arguably in the entire Islamic world. For much of the 20th century, when çini-makers were either closing their ateliers, or succumbing to mass production, he alone kept producing masterpieces of çini and training students who were interested in the art form. Thanks to his efforts and lifetime of work, by the 1980s a vibrant and prolific generation of çini masters, including his children and grand-children had started producing high quality çini items again. By his death in 1996, the number of ateliers in Kütahya, which had dwindled down to single digits, was back up to a few hundred according to some sources. Masters taking different artistic directions were producing works in different styles, perhaps in richness and quality rivalling 16th century Anatolian ceramic production for the first time in five hundred years.
|Tulumbadan daha once telefon karti vs ismarlamistim ve servislerinizle cok memnun kalmistim. Gecen hafta Turkiyeye cicek gonderdim ilk defa. Bu kadar cabuk ve bu kadar guzel bir arajman olamaz. Sizlere iki sey icin cok tesekkur ederim. Birincisi, cicekler ertesi gun ellerine varmisti. Ikincisi, buyuk, cok guzel ve taze bir arajman ellerine gecmis. Tekrar binlerce tesekkurler. Tulumba ile gurur duyuyoruz.|
Gulsebnem Bishop; Virginia, USA - Sunday, April 25, 2010