Nazim Unal Yilmaz – Waiting for the Barbarians


Nazim Unal Yilmaz, Biyik, 2012, Oil on Canvas, 50x40cm

Nazim Unal Yilmaz in the project titled “Waiting for the Barbarians,” show a sensible balance between dealing with matters of the private and the public by merging personal story with social history. Their combination of poetics with politics as well as their ability to renew the language of expressive figurative painting gives the works strength and individuality.   Although dealing with issues like identity and nationality as well as personal freedom, due to their fragmental character, the pieces are not didactic, polemic or pedagogic, but invite the spectator to actively participate in the decoding of the painting in order to free him from his usual role of being a passive receiver.
For Nazim Unal Yilmaz , painting is a field of free existence, and, at the same time, an act of resistance. His work results from a fearless self-reflection and self-analysis as well as from a socio-political awareness, which makes his paintings obviously personally and subversively political engaged. At the same time, the artist rejects to send out messages, as his paintings are proof of the lost in the belief of “absolute truth”.
Whereas his early works had a narrative and dramatic character, Nazim Unal Yilmaz ’s current paintings follow the idea of creating an ‘anlatimci irsel bir dil’, which combines the power of human ratio and emotion. This language communicates without explaining or dictating, and is open and intuitive due to its fragmented syntax. Compared to his works before 2010, which shows a more linear, stringent and coherent form and easier transfers its stories, today, his paintings are rather collage-like and deconstructive, which makes them mysterious. Instead of presenting coherent images, the spectator faces a pluralistic and heterogeneous universe, in which he has to draw relations between its various formal and conceptual elements. Only then, the spectator can gain insight in Nazim Unal Yilmaz’s painterly world, which at the same time refers to the realities we live in. Therefore, due to the artist’s combination of individuality, contextual awareness, artistic self-referentiality, and reflection on the state of the art of painting, his work is a great example of the combination of poetics and politics.
September 27 – October 13,  2012
Pilevneli Project – Istanbul


Nazim Unal Yilmaz, Heykeller, 2011, Oil on Canvas
160×130 cm


nazim-unal-yilmaz-kovboy-Oil on Canvas-50x40-2012

Nazim Unal Yilmaz, Kovboy, 2012, Oil on Canvas, 50×40 cm