HALE EKINCI Artist, Designer, Educator
Hale Ekinci is a Chicago-based Turkish interdisciplinary artist and an Assistant Professor of Art at North Central College, teaching a variety of courses in the Digital Art field. She spent childhood and much of her young adult years in Turkey, the homeland that she brings in and out of focus throughout her works. She completed her MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts and Media at Columbia College Chicago. Focusing on narrative and intercultural connections, her works vary from illustration and mixed media collage to video and installation. Her recent projects touch on social issues, cultural traditions, and political unrest. Despite the sometimes dismal nature of these controversial issues, her works are often playful as she uses vibrant colors, patterns, and hopeful moments. Viewers are encouraged to experience the works and interact with the materials and concepts, to create awareness, start conversations, and spread compassionate stories.
During her international travels, Hale Ekinci photographs homes, habitats, architecture, statues, and people from all aspects of life and collages them into mixed-media drawings. Through the combination of illustration with digital collage transfers of these photos, she crafts colorful and symbolic pattern-based images on paper. Cultural traditions, political issues, mutated memories, idioms, and translations are the backbone of her work. Personal experiences and current social issues embellished with made-up Kafkaesque details along with old shamanistic rituals make the basis of the non-linear stories she tells in her work. She creates interconnected forms that combine the reality of daily life at different locales in a way that intertwines different people, architecture and sociopolitical issues, using mixed-media drawings that explore these relationships through visual metaphor. In a way she translates each culture’s narratives of the human condition into visual concoctions that together reimagine and guide a connected global human experience.