Güliz Korkmaz Tirkeş

Güliz Korkmaz Tirkeş (b. 1976, Turkey) has been working at METU Faculty of Architecture, Ankara, since 2000 and practicing ceramics since 2005 at Ödül Işıtman’s ceramics studio at the same faculty.

She completed her graduate studies in 2002 at Hacettepe University Faculty of Fine Arts, Department of Painting, and received her PhD from METU Faculty of Architecture, in 2007. She has translated the books “Art, Design and Visual Culture” (Malcolm Barnard) and “Philosophy of Art: A Contemporary Introduction” (Noel Carroll) from English to Turkish.


Guliz Korkmaz Tirkes Ceramics, Flow Series

– Flow Series, 2010-2013

Clay is such an ordinary and at the same time extraordinary material that it may almost lead you anywhere you want. It is a stubborn, docile, flexible, relaxing, irritating companion all at once. Although obviously it is you and your state of mind that changes throughout your interaction with clay, the material is so eager to respond, I always have the feeling that it is an opponent that I have to deal with. I don’t know if this kind of somewhat impersonation of clay led me to my entirely abstract work. But in one way or another, every work that I produced is an encounter of clay and my state of mind. When you work with clay in that sense, you come face to face with yourself mostly probably in a subconscious manner. Because I have come to realize that, until this day when I felt the need to say something on what I do to the others, I haven’t fully acknowledged that this was what I was actually doing and what clay and working with it means to me.

Explaining my work has always been problematic for me. The basic reason for this is that there is no inner meaning beyond the works themselves, in other words they are self-explanatory. If I had the urge and need to explain myself with words, I would already be doing that through another form of expression. Also I like the encounter between my work and the audience being completely free from any steering. I like the vague feeling that attracts or does not attract people to different works. I believe that the abstract nature of the work gives me and the audience this kind of freedom.

The nature of clay, the way it reacts to the warmth of my hands, heat, time and water have made clay almost a persona on its own for me. The traces of the dialog that I established with clay have made it possible to produce my forms and textures. The peculiar artistic taste of clay, its resistance and dynamism may be considered as bringing a natural flow to my forms; free, uninterrupted movements and forms that stand out with their own tension.

Recently my work stands as one or both sides of an encounter, like a unique structure or person. In some others it is the dynamics of a group or crowd. Formed of numerous pieces they both move with an outside effect and push one another. The textures on the other hand reveal how the pieces are affected from one another and at the same time how they are differentiated. In this respect, it can be suggested that my work at all levels are interactions expressed with clay.


2014 – METU Library Exhibition Hall, Ankara, Turkey

2000-Present – Working as the Layout Editor of Publications of METU Faculty of Architecture and METU Journal of the Faculty of Architecture
2005-Present – Ödül Işıtman ceramics studio (METU, Ankara)
2012 – Translation: “Philosophy of Art: A Contemporary Introduction” Noel Carroll, Ütopya Yayınevi, Ankara
2007 – PhD.; Middle East Technical University, City and Regional Planning Department “Spatial Choices of Middle Classes in Çayyolu and Keçiören, Ankara”    
2002 – Translation: “Art, Design and Visual Culture” Malcolm Barnard, Ütopya Yayınevi, Ankara
2002 – M.A; Hacettepe University, Department of Painting “Spatial Analysis of Contemporary Urban Life”
1998 – B.CP; Middle East Technical University, Faculty of Architecture, Department of City and Regional Planning

Contact Güliz at gulizkt@gmail.com or visit her website.

View the ceramic artists list.