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Meet Yasemin Oncu

Yasemin Oncu

Yasemin Oncu

Yasemin Oncu

Yasemin Oncu

Yasemin Oncu paints monsters. Sometimes humorous, sometimes cruel, these wild figures portray fear, desire, anxiety and fantasy. Oncu, who graduated from OCAD U’s Interdisciplinary Master’s in Art, Media and Design in 2016, says the monsters act as mirrors that reveal people’s unconscious like dreams, and also reflect moral degradation.

“My work is a mix of emotional and primitive responses to the current political and cultural context. It involves a lot of symbols and gestures that hide the immediate meaning,” she says. “The viewer doesn’t have to look and see what is already there and get into a negative mood. Instead I’m trying to revert the dark content into a semi-dark, more playful scenario.”

Her OCAD U thesis project, “DE.MONSTRAT.TION: The Monster and the Demonization of Other” comprised a series of monster paintings. During her research she noticed the word monster in English comes from the Latin word “monere” meaning “to warn.” “The monster and demonization are my metaphors to enter the critical art scene to warn people about violence and cruelty invading our lives around the world,” she says.

Her work was shown at the 2016 Luminato Festival at The Hearn Generating Station in Toronto and included by The Artist Project in a group show of emerging artists. “I’ve been working on new ways to express my reactions to the world we live in. And, unfortunately, cruelties and calamities ensuing from wars, economic, political and ecological destruction continue non-stop,” she says.

Oncu received an undergraduate degree in Visual Art at Sabanci University, Istanbul, and moved to Toronto to pursue a Master’s degree. “I always wanted to do an MFA in a university that is specialized only in the arts, and OCAD U definitely had a lot to offer,” she says. She describes her experience of the program as liberating. “I had the chance to freely explore my ideas and express my feelings and thoughts the way I wanted. The Master’s program gave me a great opportunity to learn how to theorize those ideas and develop the ability to focus on my methodology.”

Writer/author/editor Suzanne Alyssa Andrew is also the president and biographer-in-chief of Biograflyer.




Yasemin Oncu
Yasemin Oncu
Yasemin Oncu
Yasemin Oncu

Yasemin Oncu paints monsters. Sometimes humorous, sometimes cruel, these wild figures portray fear, desire, anxiety and fantasy. Oncu, who graduated from OCAD U’s Interdisciplinary Master’s in Art, Media and Design in 2016, says the monsters act as mirrors that reveal people’s unconscious like dreams, and also reflect moral degradation.

“My work is a mix of emotional and primitive responses to the current political and cultural context. It involves a lot of symbols and gestures that hide the immediate meaning,” she says. “The viewer doesn’t have to look and see what is already there and get into a negative mood. Instead I’m trying to revert the dark content into a semi-dark, more playful scenario.”

Her OCAD U thesis project, “DE.MONSTRAT.TION: The Monster and the Demonization of Other” comprised a series of monster paintings. During her research she noticed the word monster in English comes from the Latin word “monere” meaning “to warn.” “The monster and demonization are my metaphors to enter the critical art scene to warn people about violence and cruelty invading our lives around the world,” she says.

Her work was shown at the 2016 Luminato Festival at The Hearn Generating Station in Toronto and included by The Artist Project in a group show of emerging artists. “I’ve been working on new ways to express my reactions to the world we live in. And, unfortunately, cruelties and calamities ensuing from wars, economic, political and ecological destruction continue non-stop,” she says.

Oncu received an undergraduate degree in Visual Art at Sabanci University, Istanbul, and moved to Toronto to pursue a Master’s degree. “I always wanted to do an MFA in a university that is specialized only in the arts, and OCAD U definitely had a lot to offer,” she says. She describes her experience of the program as liberating. “I had the chance to freely explore my ideas and express my feelings and thoughts the way I wanted. The Master’s program gave me a great opportunity to learn how to theorize those ideas and develop the ability to focus on my methodology.”

Writer/author/editor Suzanne Alyssa Andrew is also the president and biographer-in-chief of Biograflyer.

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