Kassel, Germany is best-known for the documenta. Every five years all eyes of the contemporary art world turn to the Hessian town in anticipation of ground-breaking artwork exhibited in the form of installation, film, performance, and so on. What is passed over when visitors take in the imported works of artists from Lebanon, Canada, or South Africa, is the fantastic work of local artists creating right here in Kassel. It is to be expected that a town putting on a production such as documenta would lend and give inspiration to a thriving artistic community. I would like to dedicate this section, Local Look, to an exploration of those artists who call Kassel home.
One of the particular hubs for creativity in Kassel, is naturally the Kunsthochschüle, the School of Art and Design. The School was founded in 1777 and has employed various internationally-renowned artists including Arnold Bode, founder of the documenta. The school works on a more open and progressive concept in comparison with other German art schools, giving it a reputation for producing contemporary artists with exceptionally innovative creativity. In July I visited the Rundgang where students exhibited their works.
Among the artists whose work impressed me the most was Burcu Turker. Majoring in Visual Communication with an emphasis on illustration and graphic, Turker is an excellent story-teller. The young artist creates sensitive and direct illustrations, telling her stories in short books accompanied by poetic dialogues. The drawings and animations are attention-getting through their sparse compositions and basic color schemes. We the viewer are quickly endeared to her romantic and imaginative characters who move melodiously about her pages. The plots are seemingly simple while expressing directly the most tangled aspects of passion, insecurity, and love.