Website: Coşkun Demirok
Coşkun Demirok is an artist born in Ankara, Turkey and currently residing in Düsseldorf.
"I was born in Ankara, but lived in Düsseldorf since the early 70s, where I studied Architecture. Throughout my years as an architect, even as senior partner in my own practice, my art practice continued, including painting, drawing, sculpture and photography.
As a young boy I participated in Fine-Art Exhibitions there; single and group shows from 90s onwards, in Ankara, Istanbul, Sarajevo, Düsseldorf, Haifa, and occasionally coordinating and curating group shows of Turkish artists in Düsseldorf. Since then, I ran a second Studio in Istanbul between 2011-2017.
Although for a long period my images were largely minimalist and the colour range very limited, my palette was dramatically expanded in the latest series of oil stick paintings, often applying oil stick onto acrylic-painted surfaces.
I suggest that these new paintings can be seen as attempts to grab, as if by an impulse, particular moments of my experience, both in relation to social and political factors, and events in my personal life. My intention is to preserve the elements of spontaneity and accident in the production of the work, so I work rapidly, and with as little planning as possible, while also trying to avoid self- consciously expressive gestures. "Corrections“ or "erasings“ form a later part of the painting process. I refuse to be associated with a particular "style" or "script“ and I frequently move between different possibilities of expression. The most important criterion in art making is being true to oneself and honest in the process.“
Pia vom Dorp wrote already in her Exhibition Text to “from Lines and Blotches“ 2009:
“The paintings refuse to point to some extraneous significance beyond themselves, to refer to anything beyond their own realness. The line as such, applied to the canvas with a brush or slat, is Coşkun Demirok's recurring pictorial figure. It epitomises construction, scientific measurement, spatial perspective and architecture. It is the symbol of Platonic ideas and intellect, to which the sensuality of colours is subordinate. Coşkun Demirok liberates the line from this imposed significance and explores its possibilities as independent element of composition. It becomes a corporeal and autonomous entity that dominates the passive surface with its own grammar. The results are not geometric constructions, but rather visual debates about composition - condensation, dissolution, calm, aggregation – and perception. The superimposition of lines points to the dimension of time by revealing the succession of hand movements, and thus the chronology of artistic creation. Drawn horizontally, vertically and diagonally, they cross the pictorial boundary to the infinite space beyond. Some, placed sparingly, form open and transparent structures, while others cluster together at centres of force, or condense themselves to literally block the underlying surface out. Black and White dominate, the colours of graphic and sketch, of utmost contrast and most direct impact.
The observer has to deal with the paintings' refusal of outside reference, their resistance to significance. The eye samples the surface, explores the space created by the lines, fathoms its depths and attunes what it grasps to its visual memory. Associations of Architecture and Topography materialise. Perceiving the colours themselves, the dynamics of composition, the pictorial drama, is only possible by shutting out the known. Each line remains, despite the reduced means of composition and the confined hand movement, an individual subjective expression, clearly distinct in colour development and intensity, varying in width, uneven at the edges, sometimes only hinted at and vulnerable in its imperfection.“ – Coşkun Demirok, 2020