Chronological Order

Thematic order


Füsun Onur

Füsun Onur

First Turkish sculptress to introduce installation art in Turkey
"Stories get their form and character right from the very start."

Date of Birth: 12/02/1938 1938

Place of Birth: Kuzguncuk, Istanbul

Date of Death:

Place of Death:

Burial Site:



Füsun Onur Füsun Onur Füsun Onur

Field of Activity

"The stories get their form and character right from the very start. Sometimes it is a certain material or something one finds that triggers it off, or it is a room, a space. Last year, for example, I wanted to compose a piece of music by means of an installation. I never look back. When I have finished a project, then it is finished once and for all."
(Füsun Onur)
Margrit Brehm (ed.), Füsun Onur, Aus der Ferne so Nah, exhibition catalogue, Baden Baden, Germany, 2001, p. 12.
"Only human beings are aware of the double meanings of symbols. ....Renouncing the use of symbols results in a reduction of positive tension in life and destroys creativity. People are superficially satisfied with what they see in a picture or a sculpture. Here is a portrait, a still life, a landscape.... The works of art are given labels, put into categories and thereby added to the lists of what is already familiar. But this restricts what the work of art is trying to say, whereas really the viewers are there to add to the meaning, the statement of what they are looking at. Creative viewers influence artists. A dialogue should take place between artist and viewer.
(Füsun Onur)
Excerpt from the catalogue of Fusun Onur's 1978 exhibition "Dıştan İçe İçten Dışa",Taksim Art Gallery, Istanbul
When I listen to music, I can almost touch it. I feel whether it is hard or soft; light or dark. I can tangibly feel its existence in space.
(Füsun Onur)
Margrit Brehm (ed.), Füsun Onur. Aus der Ferne so Nah, exhibition catalogue, Baden Baden, Germany, 2001, p. 50.
I try to work with time and space. I divide sculptures into segments of times. In painting and sculpture you cannot outline time. But in music you can. You can glance at a painting or a sculpture and walk away. But not with music. You are automatically involved in a sense of time... Music triggers off hidden energies...So I have been looking for rhythm... I work with elements of music.
(Füsun Onur)
Özge Araslı Yardım, 1987-2001 Yılları Arasında Düzenlenen Uluslararası İstanbul Bienalleri'ne Katılan Türk Sanatçılar, Mimar Sinan Üniversitesi Sosyal Bilimler Enstitüsü, Yüksek Lisans Tezi, İstanbul, 2003, p.232.
Exhibitions of Füsun Onur
  • 1970Taksim Sanat Galerisi, first solo exhibition, Istanbul
  • 19717. Biennale International des Jeune Artistes, Paris
  • 1975Taksim Sanat Galerisi, solo exhibition, İstanbul
  • 1976Açıkhava Sergisi, İstanbul Arkeoloji Müzeleri Sevenler Derneği, Istanbul
  • 1977Açıkhava Sergisi, İstanbul Arkeoloji Müzeleri Sevenler Derneği, Istanbul
  • Güzel Sanatlar Akademisi, "Yeni Eğilimler Sergileri", Istanbul
  • 1978Taksim Sanat Galerisi, solo exhibition, Istanbul
  • 1981Yeni Eğilimler Sergisi, Istanbul
  • 1982Taksim Sanat Galerisi, Istanbul
  • 1983Yeni Eğilimler Sergisi, "Sabah Jimnastiği", installation, Istanbul
  • 1985Taksim Sanat Galerisi, installation "YAŞAM-SANAT-KURGU, Eski Eşyaların Düşü", solo exhibition, Istanbul
  • 1987I.Uluslararası İstanbul Bienali, "Gölge Oyunu", installation, Istanbul
  • Maçka Sanat Galerisi, installation "İmin İmi Sergisi", solo exhibition, Istanbul
  • 1989Atatürk Kültür Merkezi, Istanbul
  • Resim Heykel Müzesi, Istanbul
  • 1990Garanti Bankası Sergi Salonu, Istanbul
  • 1990Maçka Sanat Galerisi, Istanbul
  • 1990-1991Maçka Sanat Galerisi, installation "Galeri Işıkları", solo exhibition, Istanbul
  • 1990-1991İstanbul Atatürk Kültür Merkezi, "Görünen Görünmeyen Tanıdık Tanımadıklarımız", installation, Istanbul
  • 1991Maçka Sanat Galerisi, solo exhibition, Istanbul
  • 1992İstanbul Resim Heykel Müzesi, "Dolmabahçe Hatırası", installation, Istanbul
  • 1992İstanbul Atatürk Kültür Merkezi, "Herhangi Bir İskemle", installation, Istanbul
  • 19929. Uluslararası Prilep Bienali, "FÜSUN ONUR (4.8.1992-16.8.1992)", installation, Macedonia
  • 19954. Uluslararası İstanbul Bienali, "Orient'te Buluşalım", installation, Istanbul
  • Paris, "Ben Fransızca Bilmiyorum", installation, France
  • Maçka Sanat Galerisi, installation "Kadans", solo exhibition, Istanbul
  • 1998Brüksel Botanik Bahçesi, "Kapris", installation, Belgium
  • 1998Berlin, "Nota", installation, Germany
  • 1999Kassel, "Nota", installation, Germany
  • 2000Kassel, "What the Earth Sang", installation, Germany
  • 2000-2001Mudo Maçka Sanat Galerisi, "Prelüd", solo exhibition, Istanbul
  • 2001Staatliche Kunsthalle, Baden-Baden, "Opus II-Fantasia", installation, Germany
  • 2003Lund Konsthall, "Impromptu", installation, Sweden
  • 2005Eindehoven, Netherlands


  • 1981Second Prize for her installation "Resimde Üçüncü Boyut İçeri Gel"
  • 2004Honorary prize awarded at the 50th anniversary of the International Critics Association TR


(No information available)


  • Academy of Fine Arts, Istanbul, student of Ali Hadi Bara
  • Maryland College of Art, Department of Sculpture, USA

Contributions to Society

(No information available)

Family and Friends

Projects in her Honour

(No information available)

Further Reading


Quoted Sources
Source for visual images
  • Privat archive Burcu Pelvanoğlu, Istanbul
  • Privat archive Murat Germen, Istanbul
  • Kadın Eserleri Kütüphanesi ve Bilgi Merkezi, Istanbul


The Women's Museum Istanbul would like to thank Ms Burcu Pelvanoğlu and Mr Murat Germen for their support in compiling this introductory page.

Translation into English: Emre Aslay, Chicago Illinois, USA
Editing: Editing: Lyndall von Dewitz, Oberasbach, Germany

©2012 Meral Akkent
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