Funded! This project was successfully funded on September 22, 2012.

Update #21

The Topkapi Palace (طوپقپو سرايى) Part 2

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And some additional Ottoman opulence...

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Update #20

The Topkapi Palace (طوپقپو سرايى) Part 1

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Hello all,

I have been busy making rewards for my project backers for several weeks now, and I am getting close to finishing them now. I realized, however, that I never posted any photos from my last day in Istanbul, when I spent over 6 hours in the Topkapi Palace: historic home of the Ottoman sultans. For me, this was the most visually inspiring day of the trip.

Here are some delayed pictures for your enjoyment, although unfortunately I was not permitted to photograph the relics, treasure, armor, clothes and other artifacts in the display galleries. I think I saw more gold, jewels, and material wealth in this one day than in the rest of my life combined.

Happy holidays!

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Update #19

Final Artworks

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Alas, I have returned from Turkey and resumed my life in Kansas City. I still feel pretty jet-lagged but I will post some pictures from my final exhibition at the Babayan Culture House last week.

There are three drawings that I have not shown before. The first was inspired by parallels between Buffalo Bill's employment of American Indians in his Wild West Show and the economic shift in Kapadokya from traditional ways of life to the tourist industry within a single generation. The second is a decal design 8-pointed architectural tiles, which can be used rightside-up or upside-down. It is decorated with Ottoman antiques grouped by association with the tulip of peace and the helmet of war. The third is a further development of a drawing I showed a few weeks ago. It is a geometry exercise based on glazed ceramic plates, inscribed in a hexagon, and faintly overlaid in graphite with a very specific type of grid. This will be further explained after application of color.

The last two pictures show my fired ceramic work. One figure and one tile were omitted due to cracking issues from being insufficiently dry before firing, and they require repair.

If you have questions about any of my artworks, or would like to see more photos of a specific subject (I took several thousand), please email me at shaebishop@gmail.com.

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Update #18

Shadows of Byzantium

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While surely not everyone will be enthralled by busted up old church interiors, I am pretty into them, so here is an array for your perusal. Most of these frescoes date to the 10th and 11th centuries, and all are in small churches that just look like rocks from the exterior. None have been nicely restored, as some in the area have been, so the years of abuse and iconoclasm are quite evident. I have been told that in some cases the Christians chipped the eyes or faces off of their own images, so that the saints and angels would not see their holy places desecrated during the Turkish invasion. I am not certain if this is true, but it is an interesting possibility, and, one way or another these frescoes have been through a lot– particularly the last Jesus.

Best wishes from the land of faceless saints.

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Update #17

Hiking in Another World

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I recently spent an afternoon hiking in the valleys around Göreme and, after a few years in the Missouri-Kansas landscape, it definitely feels like another world. Here are a few of many highlights including some immense phalli, an endemic species of pottery tree, an intimidating slot canyon, and  a surreal pre-sunset fog.

Coming attractions: fired ceramics, my latest drawings, and a range of Byzantine church frescoes

Enjoy!

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