Nomadic Imagination


Some notes
at the blueprint stage
on the art of
Hasan Fuat Sari

  Hasan Fuat Sari 1In the works of Hasan Fuat Sari there is a certain feature or rather something of a mood, that I am inclined to call nomadic, which more or less permeates his entire production. Notwithstanding the often abstract or geometrical forms his artistic language has a distinct narrative dimension, that incorporates echoes of a primeval past with personal layers of experience, thought and feeling. In these fusions of ancient symbols with contemporary forms of artistic expression, tradition is retained as a mean in the search for another state of mind, a transformed vision, brought together in such different shapes as for example that of a goat or a goddess of fertility. Thus his assemblages sometimes contain playful narrative fragments, while especially his later works embodies a poetical minimalism that powerfully evokes enigmatic mindscapes, changing the seemingly pure forms into tales of human adventure and experience. This strongly comes to the fore in his wheel-suites: recycled and reshaped bicycles turned into multidimensional symbols of movements in time and space, that gives voice to the metamorphoses of identity, to tensions between intimacy and universality, to visions of becoming and transcendence. His witty play with form and space also brings to mind the immaterial beauty of Ottoman calligraphy: sculpture and graphics at the same time where the wheel reads either as eye, sun, bull, movements of dance, a flight of the imagination, or a fanciful perpetum mobile - never just a wheel but often all of it in one.


  Hasan Fuat Sari 2Out-door works such as for instance Blue Scissors and The Gate of Sailors are telling examples not only of his love of seaside towns and water but also of the classicism of his epigrammatic style. The former blue-coloured work joining the row of mooring-poles along the banks of the river is as much an environmental sculpture as a visual poem that gives the whole neighbourhood an imaginary or surrealistic aura, while the latter again is endowed by a sense of sanctity or eternity.

Common to his exquisite sketch-book drawings, his small bronzes, as well as his large outdoor works is a monumentality irrespective of the actual size. His ability to convert details into something monumental - to affect the surrounding space - can also be seen in the serial works: architectural compositions modulating abstract elements of either wood or stainless steel to conjure up the feeling of an endless space.


  Hasan Fuat Sari 3 The attempt to bring together different or even contradictory materials and forms as well as ideas and frames of thought, gives the art of Hasan Fuat Sari a transgressing or even utopian dimension that invites us to a search into the yet not existing. Last but not least the conjoined forms of his artistic language with its dialectical tensions between mind and world, time and place, presence and absence, departures and arrivals, records the challenge of transcending himself and his roots in changing or foreign circumstances by trying to make the world his home country. In this respect I think that the fish as an often returning motive expresses on the one hand a certain nostalgia for being totally absorbed in ones environment, and on the other hand the dream of an oceanic life - and as such a symbol of hope and fulfilment. Taken as a whole his art exhibits a spiritual journey carried by the vision of a world without borders, of an all-embracing human community, encouraged by a dream of renewal, and kept alive by rituals of his nomadic imagination.

In Turku, Finland, October 2001

Göran Torrkulla
Philosopher and Artist


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