ERKUT TERLIKSIZ & BLIC: Dorothy Circus Gallery | Double Solo Exhibition

22 Jun - 20 Jul 2024
DCG in Rome, at the conclusion of this year's rich and vibrant exhibition season, presents an extraordinary double solo show that creates a dialogue between the turkish Cubist Erkut Terliksiz and the Filipino street artist BLIC, two artists from very different backgrounds with distinct and original styles. With two new series, respectively titled "Isola" and "Spirit of Time," Erkut and BLIC converge their diverse perspectives into a common viewpoint on contemporary humanity and its complex evolution, between tradition and modernity in our rapidly changing world.
For his debut in Rome, Erkut chose an Italian word rich with meaning: Isola. This collection of eight works embodies both Erkut's innovative approach and the material research of his technique, which blends the concept of error with that of development. As he himself explains, his work begins with a blot, and for Erkut, the first rule of painting is that there are no rules. The origin of the painting is experimental, but it is the viewer's interpretation that completes its mission and infuses it with meaning. Leveraging the right side of the brain and drawing on the seeds left by Picasso and George Condo, Erkut expresses himself with a whimsical exploration of absurd scenarios, rich with surreal figures rendered in thick and bold brushstrokes that, grouped in the center of each composition, create a dynamic focal point. The interaction between the sea, clouds, and urban landscapes presents us with a sensitive emotional depth, connecting our perception of nature, earth, and human existence in an elusive, almost delirious symphony. The inspiration for this series arose during the pandemic, a period in which the artist dreamed of being on a remote island with his family. These dreams nourish scenarios of freedom and introspection, and the psychological exploration related to the concept of isolation as an escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life, a theme that deeply resonates with Erkut's personal experience and the essence of the outsider artist. The characters, tightly embraced almost like clusters, represent the small community, the family unit, of selected affections, but at the same time, they are synonymous with solitude, as they reflect a contemporary reality suffering from detachment even when people are close and the terrible habituation to the pain of others. Works such as "Dungeon," "Mars Opening Party," and "Exodus" suggest significant narrative depth. "Exploring the moral decay of society in exemplary party scenes, the horizon of Mars is even graced by a little monster with a prominent nose that alludes to Elon Musk. Erkut recounts the struggles and resilience of people moving to survive, navigating through the heartbreaking stories that characterize our time."
On the opposite wall of our Red Room, "Spirit of Time" by BLIC, the renowned Filipino street artist, invites us into a world of reflection and revelation. Through a virtual and tangible tour of BLIC's studio, where he mentors and inspires a collective of artists, we uncover a treasure trove of ideas and emotions. This creative factory, while deeply resonating with the Southeast Asian art scene, stands out for its robust Filipino cultural roots and its uniquely profound sensitivity. Renowned worldwide, BLIC is celebrated for his signature sign character, the hand personified with a smiling Emoji face that runs through the streets. This symbolic character stems from his personal story as an emerging artist who paints on the city walls of his daily life. In that faraway Asia still free from constraints, street art is in fact the chosen tool to capture attention in the contemporary world. BLIC’s hands symbolize the tool of universal communication, reflecting the desire of artists like him and their strong determination to leave a mark and spread their voice globally. His charming characters have the ability to reach viewers straight to the heart, like a tennis ball thrown by a child from across the ocean.
In his new series "Spirit of Time," BLIC explores the impact of modernization on contemporary life, a theme vividly represented in each of his new works. These paintings, with their soft and skillful oil techniques, expand the focus from individual portraits, zooming out to explore a broader panorama, capturing the dynamism, struggles, fears, and achievements of the community in which the artist lives and transcribes what surrounds him. Each work in this new series illuminates different aspects of modern existence, from urbanization and development in villages to the rise of fast food and digital communication. BLIC explores how these phenomena have grown as a consequence of the pandemic, questioning whether the advancements of the contemporary era are truly progressive or subtly corroding the quality of life. His perspective offers us a mirror in which to view our society, a mirror capable of reflecting both the successes and challenges of contemporary life, inviting the viewer to evaluate the true cost of modernization.

Spirit of Time” by Blic and “Isola” by Erkut Terliksiz are part of our Annual Program, "Pursuing Harmony: the Artistic Odyssey of 2024".