Feyhaman Duran: Painting between the Ottoman Past and the Turkish Modernity

Feyhaman Duran was born in Istanbul in 1886. His talent for painting was detected during his education in the Galatasaray Mekteb-i Sultani, which was renamed later to Galatasaray Lycee. After his graduation he started to work in the same school as a teacher for a short while but his talent opened him the way to […]

was born in Istanbul in 1886. His talent for painting was detected during his education in the Galatasaray Mekteb-i Sultani, which was renamed later to Galatasaray Lycee. After his graduation he started to work in the same school as a teacher for a short while but his talent opened him the way to Paris. There, Duran could improve his skills in two famous art schools Ecole des Beaux-Arts and Académie Julian. Back in Istanbul, with the end of the First World War, he continued to work as a teacher and later as an academician. In 1919 he became a member of the Ottoman Society to which he contributed a lifelong with his knowledge and art also as the society was renamed and enlarged several times. In 1922 he married his student Güzin Hanım. In the early republican period, the Republican People´s Party arranged trips to Anatolia, in which people met painters. In the framework of this project Duran went to Gaziantep in 1938. From 1939 onwards, he presented regularly his paintings in art exhibitions arranged by the state. Until his death in 1970, Feyhaman Duran led a life devoted to art not only on the professional basis but also privately. [1]

The painter belonged to the so called “1914 Generation” like İbrahim Çallı or Namık İsmail who received their higher education for painting in Europe and turned back with the outbreak of the First World War to their homeland. Combining their experiences in Europe with their own culture, they created a recognizable impressionist painting style. [2]

Duran preferred artwork in still life, and painting. As a man living in the radical transition period from the Ottoman Empire to the Turkish Republic, his art had elements from both eras. While he portrayed symbolic faces of the republic like Atatürk, Ismet Inönü or Safiye Ayla, he never turned his back to his Ottoman past. [3] From 1943 to 1947, with a special permission for entrance to the closed building, he created numerous paintings of the Topkapı Palace. [4] Furthermore he used in several still life works the Islamic calligraphy.

Before his death, Feyhaman Duran donated his house to the Istanbul University, where his remembrance is maintained today. For interested people in Turkish painting, the Sakıp Sabancı Museum presents his detailed biography and exhibits his paintings until July 2017.

References:
[1]Prof.Dr. Gül İrepoğlu, Türk Resimde Bir Temel Taşı: Feyhaman Duran. www.antikalar.com
[2] Dr. Sevgi Gürtuna, 1914 Kuşağı Ressamlarından Namık İsmail. www.antikalar.com
[3] www.sakipsabancimuzesi.org
[4] Prof.Dr. Gül İrepoğlu, Türk Resimde Bir Temel Taşı: Feyhaman Duran.  www.antikalar.com



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