Short Biography

237 words, Last updated 2015, June.

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Elmas Deniz b. 1981, is based in Istanbul.

Her practice is conceptually driven and includes installation, sculpture, video, drawing and writings. Recurring topics in her work are nature, globalization, urbanism and economy. Elmas Deniz is initiator of several artist-run projects, and she is co-editor of the art journal Sanat Dunyamız. Her recent solo shows in Istanbul Seeing the Black Panther was presented at Pilot Gallery (2014) and Elmas —where the focus was on poverty— at Macka Art Gallery(2012) With Pilvi Takala, her solo exhibition On Volatility was at Galeria Nouva in Bucharest Romania(2007)Her group exhibitions include: 14th Istanbul Biennale,Saltwater:A Theory of Thought Forms; Every Inclusion is an Exclusion of Other Possibilities, SALT, Istanbul (2015); The Moving Museum Istanbul; We are here because you were/are t(here), Das Weisse Haus, Vienna; Stay With Me, AP, Berlin DE(2014); Unrest of Form, Secession, Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna, AT(2013). There is No Audience, Centro Cultural Montehermoso, Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain(2009); B-Fact: Black Sea / Baltic Sea / Barensts Sea, Bilgi atelier, Istanbul (2003) among many others.She was awarded IASPIS Artist Grand (2014) ; Berlin Goethe Institute Cultural Grand(2007), and has been a resident at Pistoletto Foundation IT (2011); Sextant e Plus La Friche Belle de Mai, Marseilles, FR (2009); DIVA Copenhagen, DK (2008) and Vassl, Karachi, PK (2006), AIWA Lebanon(2005). Elmas Deniz graduaded from Dokuz Eylul University, Department of Painting (2003) and Izmir Anatolian High School of Fine Arts(1998)

Curriculum Vitae

1376 words, Last updated 2015, June.

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Elmas Deniz, 1981 Bergama, Turkey. Artist. She lives and works in Istanbul.Beside her artistic practices she is writer and initiator of various artist run initiatives and self-organized structures. She is interested in global power structures, state-control, urbanism, economy and globalization, as it is reflected in her organizational as well as artistic practice.

Professional activities

  • 2012-on She is editor of Mental Space supplementary series of the journal Sanat Dunyamiz
  • 2011-on She is founder editor of Merkezkac publications
  • Organization of series of talks at Depo in Istanbul as collaborator of Acik Masa
  • 2010 Evaluation and assessment of an art institution that operates in Turkey
  • 2004 She was one of the founders and project directors of K2 Artist Initiative between 2004-2007
  • 2002 Founder member of Kutu [Box] Portable Art Gallery


  • Dokuz Eylul University Faculty of Fine Arts, Painting Department, 2003-1998
  • Izmir Anatolian Fine Arts High School / Visual Arts 1998-1995

Residency programmes and Grants

  • 2015 IASPIS Artist Grant and residency [ May] Stockholm, Sweden
  • 2014 IASPIS Artist Grant and residency [ Jan-April] Stockholm, Sweden
  • 2011 Pistoletto Foundation Cittadelarte Unidee residency, artist grant, [June-Oct] Biella, Italy
  • 2009 Sextant de Plus - La Friche Belle de Mai, [July-August] Marseilles, France
  • 2008 Danish international artists exchange program-DIVA Residency [June-August] Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Garanti Platform CAC [March-May] Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2007 CPH Air residency program [April] Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Berlin Goethe Institute Culture-Program artist grant, Berlin, Germany
  • 2006 Vasl Artist's colective, international workshop/residency [February] Gadani, Karachi, Pakistan
  • IASPIS expert visitor program, Malmo-Stockholm, Sweden
  • FRAME expert visitor program, Helsinki, Finland
  • 2005 Aiwa Artist international workshop/residency [September] Beiruth, Lebanon

Solo Projects and Exhibitions

  • 2014 Seeing the Black Panther, Pilot Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2014 Universal Minimum Wage Commission screening, Svilova (online gallery), Sweden
  • 2012 Elmas [35th years anniversary exhibitions] Curator: Nazli Gurlek, Macka Sanat Galerisi, Istanbul
  • 2012 Money issues / Para Mevzuu [with Ozgur Demirci] Curated by Nicoletta Daldenise, Pasajist independent art space, Istanbul
  • 2007 On Volatility/ Despre Votalititate [with Pilvi Takala] Curated by Oana Tanese, Galeria Nouva, Bucharest, Romania
  • 2006 Nothing Can Happen to Us [Cernobyl] Alti Aylik Project Space, Initiated by Sylvia Kouvali, Kristina Kramer and Öyku Özsoy, Istanbul Turkey
  • 2004 Solo Performance, All About Lies, Apartment Project, Istanbul, Turkey

Group Exhibitions | Selection

  • 2015 SALTWATER: A Theory of Thought Forms, drafted by Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2015 EVERY INCLUSION IS AN EXCLUSION OF OTHER POSSIBILITIES, Curated by November Paynter, Salt, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2014 Stay with me, initiated by Selda Asal, Apartment Project, Berlin, Germany
  • 2014 WE ARE HERE BeCAUSE YOU WERE/ARE (t)HERE, Curated by Lennard Dost, das weisse haus,Vienna, Austria
  • 2014 Moving Museum Istanbul, initaded by Aya Mousavi and Simon Sakhai, Sishane CarPark, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2013 UNREST OF FORM/Imagining the Political Subject Exhibition by Wiener Festwochen, SECESSION, Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, Austria
  • 2013 Suspended Song, Co-Pilot, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2012 onyedikasimikibinoniki[art prize] Haskoy string factory, Curated by Öyku Özsoy, Istanbul, Turkey
  • Me,myself and I, Cermodern, Initiated by the collective Gercek Kotuler, Ankara, Turkey
  • 2011 Becoming Istanbul, SALT, Istanbul, Turkey, initiated by Meriç Öner
  • Friday in F.R.A.C,Interventions,Curated by Nicoletta Daldenise, Frac Piedmonte Collection, Biella, Italy
  • 2010 Strade/ Routes, Centro Espositivo SMS, Viale delle Piagge, Cinema Arsenale, Pisa, Italy
  • Emploi Seasonniers, La Friche Belle de Mai, Marseilles, France
  • Floating Volumes, Frise Kunstlerhaus, Hamburg, Germany
  • 2009 There is No Audience, Curated by Adnan Yildiz, Montehermoso,Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain
  • Contingent Identities, Initiated by Isidora Ficovic, Depo, Istanbul, Turkey
  • Creative Destruction, Outlet Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2008 e-flux video rental, The Building, Berlin, Germany
  • On produce-ability, initiated by Alti Aylik, 5533, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2007 Bound By, Basement Gallery, initiated by Claudia Weber, Vienna, Austuria
  • Urban Pedestals, Norregade (Public space), Curated by Lotte Juul Petersen, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Punctured Tyree, initiated by participant artists, K2 Gallery, Izmir, Turkey
  • 2006 5th Gyumri Biennale, The Seas, Dreams and Illusions, Curated by Arpine Tokmakjan [part of Buy a Dream store] Yerevan, Armenia
  • Vassl International artist workshop exhibition, Karachi, Pakistan
  • Check in Europe, European Patent Office, Curated by Veronika Wiman, Munich, Germany
  • 2005 Gemini: Muse Project, Amstelkring Museum, Curator Fulya Erdemci, Amsterdam, Nederlands
  • Normalization 3/ that from a long way off look likes flies... Platform Garanti CAC, Curated by November Paynter-Vasif Kortun, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2004 The Visitor, Galerist, curated by Emre Baykal-Rob Perree, Istanbul, Turkey
  • The Tedium and The Rainbow, Aksanat,Curated by Levent Calikoglu, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2003 B-Fact: Back Sea/ Baltic Sea/ Barents Sea, Initiated by Huseyin Alptekin, Bilgi Atelier 111, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2002 Under the Beach: The Pavement, Istanbul Museum of Contemporary Art Proje 4L[2001-2004] Curated By Halil Altindere-Vasif Kortun, Istanbul, Turkey


  • 2010 Overtime Work, Ahmed Adnan Saygun Art Center, Izmir, Turkey
  • 2008 The Unmarked Categories, K2[Artist initiative]Gallery, Izmir, Turkey


  • 2015 EVERY INCLUSION IS AN EXCLUSION OF OTHER POSSIBILITIES,Conversation with Collector Saruhan Doğan, Salt, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2015 Debater at EMWAP Theatre and Dance festival, invited as visual artist, D22, Talimhane Tiyatrosu, Moda Sahnesi, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2014 Artist Talk with Merve Unsal, Pilot Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2014 Lecture, Konstfack, Stockholm, Sweden
  • 2012 Moderator and speaker, Alp Klanten's artist talk, Macka Art Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2010 Non-conformist Artist, artist talk, Depo, Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2009 Relative Positions and Conclusions exhibition, artist talk, curated by Önder Özengi, Suriye Pasaji (temporary exhibition space) Istanbul, Turkey
  • 2008 Alternative practices, artist talk, Orhangazi University, Eskisehir, Turkey
  • 2007 Open Table: Esra Okyay, organized by Muruvvet Turkyilmaz, Platform Garanti CAC, Istanbul, Turkey
  • Artists Talk, with Adnan Yildiz, Overgaden Art Institute/ Cousina Autonomia, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Anonymous, production workshop leaded by the artist, Kultur University, Istanbul, Turkey
  • P2P Izmir workshop, K2 CAC, organized by Veronica Wiman
  • 2006 Artists Talk, Elmas Deniz-Ahmet Ogut, Kultur Universty, Istanbul, Turkey
  • Platform Garanti CAC/ PIST/BAS, Istanbul / Alternative Art spaces, organized by Pelin Tan and Anton Vidokle
  • Gyumri Biennale workshop, organized by Arpine Tokmakjan, Yerevan, Armenia
  • 2005 Art Actually Concept origin by Fatos Ustek, Michel Thrusz, Contribution to fanzine, Istanbul/New York Workshops
  • 2004 Artist initiatives from Brussels, Istanbul, Izmir, Diyarbakir, Platform Garanti CAC,Istanbul, Turkey

Text contributions

  • 2013 Art-Agenda, Review of 13th Istanbul Biennial “Mom, Am I Barbarian?”
  • 2013 Translation The History of Anarchisms, Author:Sureyya Evren Turkeli, İletisim Publications, Istanbul
  • 2013 Open Spaces 2 Online Publication-
  • 2012 As editor- Sanat Dunyamiz Mental Space series 1 starting from November 2012 | 2012-2013
  • 2011 Muhtelif magazine 6, [upcoming 2012] with Burak Delier and Önder Özengi, Istanbul, Turkey
  • Who am I anyway, interwiewer, for the publication regarding Koken Ergun's solo show, Editor: Oliver Kielmayer, Kunstlerhause Winterthur
  • 2010 As editor- Overtime work exhibition catalogue, Izmir, Turkey
  • 2009 Dersimiz Guncel Sanat, Outlet Guncel Sanat Dizisi-1, Editor Azra Tuzunoglu
  • 2007 User's Manual- Contemporary art in Turkey between 1986-2007, Editor: Halil Altindere, Artist Productions, Istanbul
  • 2007 Contemporary art meetings II, Yapi Kredi Books, Istanbul
  • 2005 December, Rh Art Magazine, hidden face exhibition review, in colaboration with Tufan Baltalar

Other Publications/ Catalogues/ texts

  • 2015 User's Manual- Contemporary art in Turkey between 1986-2015, Editor: Halil Altindere,Süreyya Evren, Artist Productions, Istanbul
  • 2013 Contemporary art from Turkey for kids, YKY, Ist.
  • 2012 Catalogue, Full art prize, Istanbul Turkey
  • Sanat Dunyamiz Journal,Elmas Hasedini Toki'lerinden yakalamak,Sureyya Evren
  • Art Unlimited journal, Interview with Burak Delier- Elmas Deniz,
  • 2010 Emploi Seasonniers exhibition catalogue
  • Kasa Gallery 10th year anniversary book, sabanci university press, Istanbul
  • 2009 There is No Audience an Exhibition about Public Imagination, Catalogue, Texts by Adnan Yildiz- Noam Chomsky
  • 2006 February issue, On Trends: Where Does Turkish Art Stand Today?, Tema Celeste, by Fatos Ustek.
  • July Alti Aylik Project Space, Art Review, by November Paynter.
  • Vasl International Artist Workshop Exhibition Catalogue, Karachi, Pakistan.
  • 2005 AIWA International Artist Workshop Exhibition Catalogue, Beiruth, Lebanon.
  • Alice versus Alice, Exhibition Catalogue, Istanbul
  • 2004 The Tedium and The Rainbow Exhibition Catalogue, Aksanat, Istanbul
  • 2002 Arada Kalmak, Exhibition Catalogue, Izmir

Collective initiations

  • Group p| 2013
  • Radikalisler| 2012
  • K2 artist initiative| 2004-2008
  • Kutu portable art venue| 2002

PDF Portfolio

Last updated 2013, September.

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This portfolio includes selected works which have been produced between 2008 and 2013.

“Universal Minimum wage commission, 2013” “Life Quality for one, 2012” “Self portrait, 2012” and “The man who wants to be tourist, 2008” and works which are shown in Maçka Sanat Gallery in a solo exhibition –that are indicated by numbers in this portfolio– namely: “Poverty line, 2012”, “The fork, 2011” “Fear of Poverty, 2012” “Bird ‘head,2012” “TOKI and Happiness, 2009” “Happy Collection,2012” and “Sumerbank,2012”