April 21, 2016

From ballerinas dancing on the moon and galaxies inside brains to geometric shapes tumbling through the sky and giant flowers sprouting from skyscrapers, Ceren Kilic’s collage is as surreal as it comes. Born and bred in Istanbul, she draws her inspiration from the chaos, diversity and rich history of her city. Her work is a blend of the surreal and the spiritual. We caught up with Ceren about the mysteries of the Cosmos, building strange worlds and discovering a love for painting.

UO: Can you tell us a little about your story so far?

My name is Ceren Kılıç, and I was born and raised in Istanbul. I’ve been a digital collage artist since 2012, although I have recently discovered painting which has changed my artistic life.

UO: You’re based in Istanbul – what do you love most about the city, and how do you feel the city inspires your work?

İstanbul is a magnetic city. What I love most is The Bosphorus which connects the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea. Istanbul is a very welcomig city, rich with culture: it is a complete melting pot. The history of this city is so magical: Roman, Byzantine, Latin and Ottoman… İstanbul is like a time machine. The chaos, as well as the mixture of culture and art in this city inspires the surreal side of my work.

UO: Who or what inspires your surreal and colourful collages?

I am inspired by old French New Wave Films. I’ve watched all the movies of my favourite French director, Eric Rohmer and my biggest inspiration comes from these films. All of the details in his movies have influenced me to make collages by re-imagining the past with the future. Astronomy also inspires my artwork – they study of stars, galaxies, planets, moons, asteroids and comets is fascinating.

UO: What originally attracted you to collage as a medium? What do you love most about working in collage?

I love making digital collage. I like the idea of mixing the past and the future and creating a new pattern. When you work in collage, you can reinvent a life or a period of time very easily. It’s so magical.

UO: Are there any particular themes you are drawn to again and again?

I am always inspired by nature and the enigma of the Cosmos. But now I’m working on a new series of collage and my orienatation will be different this time.

UO: Your work is very abstract and often surreal – what is it about the abstract/surreal that fascinates you?

I like to imagine people in a different dimension, and I like to break physical rules. Using my imaginary patterns, I create a new life; building strange, extraordinary scenes with whimsical characters. What fascinates me in surrealism is the strange and magical. It’s unique.

UO: A lot of your work incorporates elements of space – what do you find appealing in time travel / space?

I like to create a brand new world where everything is possible. I like to add an endless dimension to my works.

UO: How would you describe your artistic style in three words?

Dreamy, cosmic, surreal.

UO: Do you like to work in other mediums outside of collage?

I like photography. Sometimes I use my own photographs for my collages. I also started painting last summer. I am debuting abstract acrylic paintings on paper and this year, I did my first painting on canvas.