ZEKI FAIK IZER
(Istanbul, 15 April 1905-Istanbul, 12 December 1988)
While still in elementary school her had his first an lessons from Agah Efendi, and at the age of 13 began to write poetry, some of which was published in the magazines Insan and Akbaba. In 1923 he enrolled at the School of Fine Arts and received his basic education in art from Hikmet Onat, after which he entered the studio of Ibrahim Calli. In 1928 Izer passed an examination to go to Europe, and studied in Paris under Andre Lhote and Emile-Othon Friesz, as well as learning the art of ceramics and the fresco at the Paris Higher School of Fine Arts. In 1930 he had a still life displayed at the Grand Palais Spring Exhibition.
Leaving Paris in 1932, Izer became a teacher of drawing at the Gazi Teacher Training Institute, but was soon transferred to the Ataturk High School for Boys. He resigned and went back to Istanbul, where he helped to found Group D, and then in 1934 returned to Paris, this time for a two-year stay, following which he began to teach photography at Istanbul's State Academy of Fine Arts in 1937.
In 1939 he travelled to Eskisehir on a Republican People's Party program designed to acquaint artists with their homeland, and in 1945 had his first one-man show, at the Ismail Oygar Gallery. He contributed to a number of exhibitions, and did murals, and from 1948-52 was director of the Istanbul Academy of Fine Arts, as well as chairman of the Department of Painting.
In 1949 Izer made a study tour to France, Germany and Italy, and in 1951 founded the Turkish Institute of Art History. His writings were published in various art magazines, and when be retired in 1968 an exhibition in his honor - his 13th pesonal show - was held at the Academy. From 1971-84 her lived in Paris.
At the outset of his career, under Calli 's influence, he tried an impressionistic approach, and then for a time had a realistic approach faithful to nature. While a student in Paris he was moderately influenced by Cubism and Expressionism, but also studied the Romantics.
During the 1960s he turned to a lyrical abstraction which brought out the relationship between music and the rhythm of painting, and in his work stressed the pictorial and internal rather than drawing. The result was a feeling of sensitive energy and genuineness that emanated from his canvasses. After 1976, in drawings and paintings done with an eye on the television screen, Izer treated the rhythm and pace of the motile expressionistically, wishing to give both motion and rhythm a pictorial face. During these same years be also experimented with the collage. From the very beginning he saw the subject as a springboard for an, not as an end in itself, as he unshed to express the rhythms and contradictions of nature, as well as the harmony of opposites, and it was in these terms that he sought to treat the interaction of East and West, being influenced by the an of Japan and China.