Leyla Gediz

Leyla Gediz


Leylâ Gediz approaches painting as a thought process and a discursive practice to explore the relationship between figuration and its conditions of possibility. Using a limited color palette, her process-oriented practice incorporates fragments from everyday life as filtered through contemporary image processing technologies. Her paintings are structural experiments that dislocate and rearticulate the background-figure relationship to simultaneously deconstruct painting into its constitutive materials and processes, and rearticulate it through techniques of assemblage. 


Gediz’ painting is about recomposing the world from the standpoint of what is usually held off the frame, with attention directed toward what constitutes the support structures of daily life and of painting as practice. Cardboard boxes, packaging units, stretchers, cables and joints made to be compatible with objects they support, connect and protect, take center stage in her compositions.  Attempting to define a perspective through the margins, taking as point of departure subordinate and nomadic positions of bodies, objects and tools, Gediz operates like a surrealist ethnographer of displacement and diasporic being, engaged in excavating emotions that everyday fragments emanate when they are carved out of their literal and metaphorical backgrounds. These fragments are played out by random, found, mundane yet useful objects, human beings close to her heart, the light and shadow they cast on each other, and their – sometimes awkward – volume in space. At first sight, Gediz’ compositions seem to carry a tribute to the grid as the primary form of spatial organization, repeated through the forms of the canvas, the stretcher, the screen and the network; but the meticulous painterly operations of shading that distance every other fragment from its background fully reinscribe them in the realm of mimesis. Through her subtle painterly composition, Leyla Gediz conveys an unstable, strange and hybrid reality,  hovering in that fragile zone between fiction and non-fiction. 


Leylâ Gediz (b. Istanbul, 1974) lives and works in Lisbon. She completed her MA in Visual Arts at Goldsmiths College (London, 1999) and a BA in Fine Art (Painting) at the Slade School of Fine Art, UCL (London, 1998).  Her recent solo exhibitions include “Home Staging” at CAC Cosmos (Lisbon, 2024); “Cosa Mentale”, Galerie L’Atlas invites THE PILL (Paris, 2022); “Layer From Background” supported by Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Edificio EPUL de Bartolomeu da Costa Cabral, Martim Moniz (Lisbon, 2022); “Denizens”, THE PILL (Istanbul, 2019); “ANAGRAM”, OJ Art Space (Istanbul, 2018). Her notable group exhibitions include “This Play” cur. by Emre Baykal, ARTER (Istanbul, 2022); “Hybridish” cur. by Alistair Hicks, Georg Kargl Fine Arts (Vienna, 2020); “Words Are Very Unnecessary”, cur by Selen Ansen, ARTER (Istanbul, 2019); “The New Normal”, The Hangar (Beirut, 2017); Freundschaftsspiel Istanbul, Freiburg Museum Für Neue Kunst (Freiburg, 2016); “Every Inclusion Is An Exclusion of Other Possibilities”, SALT Beyoglu (Istanbul, 2015); “Skeptical Thoughts on Love” cur by Misal Adnan Yildiz, Künstlerhaus Stuttgart (Stuttgart, 2014); Istanbul Eindhoven-SALTVANAbbe: Post ‘89, SALT Beyoglu (Istanbul, 2012); “Dream and Reality - Modern and Contemporary Women Artists From Turkey”, Istanbul Museum of Modern Art (Istanbul, 2011). Leylâ Gediz’ work is included in prestigious public and private collections such as Istanbul Modern, Arter (Istanbul), ARCO Foundation (Spain) and Van Abbemuseum (Eindhoven). In 2023 she was the recipient of the Sovereign Portuguese Art Prize by public votes. 


1999 MA Visual Arts, Goldsmiths College, London,UK
1998 BA Fine Art, The Slade School of Fine Art, UCL,
London, UK
1997 Erasmus Exchange, Städelschule für Bildende
Künste, Frankfurt am Main, DE
1994 Foundation Course, Chelsea College of Art
and Design, London, UK


Solo Exhibitions

2023 Missing Cat, Purdy Hicks Gallery, London, UK
2022 Cosa Mentale, L’Atlas X THE PILL, Paris, FR
Layer From Background, Martim Moniz Square,
supported by Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation
and SAHA, Lisbon, PT
2021 A Solo Presentation: Leylâ Gediz, The Digital
Space of the Community, ARCO E-EXHIBITIONS
2019 Denizens, THE PILL, Istanbul, TR
2018 ANAGRAM, OJ Art Space in collaboration with
THE PILL, Istanbul, TR
2017 Serpilen, THE PILL, Istanbul, TR
Parabéns, Amsterdam Gallery Night at Akıncı,
Amsterdam, NL
2014 Kilimli Konak, Topağacı Ihlamur Yolu, Istanbul,
2012 Reverb, Kulüp Külah, Istanbul, TR
2011 Coming Soon, Rampa, Istanbul, TR
2010 Under Construction, Curated by Marita
Muukkonen, Kaapelin Galleria, HIAP, Helsinki,
Subject: Free, Galerist, Istanbul, TR
2009 noa noa, Galerist / Tophane, Istanbul, TR
Follower, Österreichisches Sankt Georgs
Kolleg, Istanbul, TR
2008 Perfect Moment, Galerist, Istanbul, TR
2007 It Takes Two, Fabian-Claude Walter Gallery,
Zurich, CH
2006 Passenger, Roberts & Tilton, Los Angeles, USA
2005 Uniform, Galerist, Istanbul, TR
2003 Keep it a Secret, Galerist, Istanbul, TR
2002 Fake Freedom Show, Galerist, Istanbul, TR


Group Exhibitions

2024 Es Estou Aqui, cur. Isabel Carlos, 119 Marvila
Studios, Lisbon, PT
Suppose You Are Not, cur. Selen Ansen, Arter,
Istanbul, TR
2023 This Play, cur. Emre Baykal, Arter, Istanbul, TR
2022 AS IF IT COULDN’T, THE PILL, Istanbul, TR
2021 Kartografya, Streets of Beyoglu, Istanbul, TR
Interactions, Istanbul Modern, Istanbul, TR
2020 Hybridish, cur. Alistair Hicks, Georg Kargl Fine

Arts, Vienna, AT
2018 Ev / Home. Evliyagil Museum Ankara, TR
2016 Freundschaftsspiel Istanbul : Freiburg, Museum Für Neue Kunst, Freiburg, DE Ohne, mekân68, Vienna, AT States of Portraits, cur. Ali Akay, açıkekran Levent, Istanbul, TR 2015 Self-Help, İnci Furni and Leyla Gediz, Produced by Bige Örer, Elhamra Han, Beyoğlu, Istanbul, TR Every Inclusion is an Exclusion of Other Possibilities, Salt Beyoğlu, Istanbul, TR Middle of the Path, Schau_Raum, cur. Didem Yazıcı, Museum für Moderne Kunst, Freiburg, DE
2014 The Moving Museum, Istanbul, TR Summer Resort for a Song, cur. Borga Kantürk, Depo, Istanbul, TR Skeptical Thoughts on Love, Künstlerhaus Stuttgart, Artistic Director: Misal Adnan Yıldız, Stuttgart, DE Trocadero, cur. Nazlı Gürlek, Nesrin Esirtgen Collection, Istanbul, TR
2013 Art Barter, 5533, Istanbul, TR Kirli Çıkı, bantmag mekan, Moda, Istanbul, TR BiennaleOnline, hosted by ART+ / artistic director: Jan Hoet Kent, ODTÜ Sanat 14, Orta Doğu Teknik Üniversitesi, Ankara, TR
2012 Istanbul Eindhoven-SALT VanAbbe: Post ’89, SALT Beyoğlu, Istanbul, TR Gerçeklik Terörü, cur. Periferi Kolektif (Rafet Arslan and Alper Ince), Depo, Istanbul, TR
2011 Dream and Reality – Modern and Contemporary Women Artists from Turkey, Istanbul Museum of Modern Art, Istanbul, TR Confessions of Dangerous Minds ContemporaryArt from Turkey, Phillips De Pury & Company Rooms, Saatchi Gallery, London, UK
2010 Second Door, cur. Elif Varol Ergen, İpek Zeynep Aran, CER Modern, Ankara, TR Fantasy & Island, cur. Anne Alessandri, Çelenk
Bafra, Adnan Yıldız, FRAC Corsica, FR A Dream...but not Yours: Contemporary Art from Turkey, cur. Esra Sarıgedik Öktem, National
Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, USA
2009 Seriously Ironic, cur. Dolores Denaro & Isin Önol, Centre Pasquart, Biel, CH On Connait La Chanson, cur. Ali Akay, Aksanat, Istanbul, TR
2008 Made in Turkey © 1978- 2008, Paulskirche, Frankfurt, DE Save As.. , Triennale Bovisa Museum, cur. Derya Yücel in collaboration with Santral Istanbul, Milan, IT Last Things, Westfälischer Kunstverein, Münster, DE Sampling, cur. Locus Athens, Museum of Folk Art, Athens, GR
2007 Flat Tyre, K2, Izmir, TR
2006 Acıyla Karışık, Garanti Platform Contemporary Art Centre, Istanbul, TR Istanbul, Sommer Contemporary Art Gallery, TelAviv, IL
Works on Paper, Galerist (dir. Murat Pilevneli), Istanbul, TR
2005 Eindhoven – Istanbul, Van Abbemuseum, Curators: Eva Meyer-Hermann, Charles Esche, Eindhoven, NL Urban Reality: Focus Istanbul, Martin-Gropius Bau, Berlin, DE Hot Spots: Istanbul, International Film Festival Rotterdam, Off Corso, Rotterdam, NL Art for..., cur. Vasif Kortun & November Paynter, Garanti Platform Contemporary Art Centre, Istanbul, TR
2004 The Ghost Line, cur. Ali Akay & Levent Calikoglu, Aksanat, Istanbul, TR
2003 The Power of Language, cur. Ali Akay, Keçiburcu, DSM, Diyarbakır, TR Organized Conflict, cur. Fulya Erdemci, Proje 4L, Istanbul, TR
Where? / Here?, Turkish Art Today, cur. Vasıf Kortun – Fulya Erdemci – Emre Baykal, The Museum of Modern Art, Saitama / JP
2002 Istanbul Pedestrian Exhibitions 1, cur. Fulya Erdemci, Nişantaşı, Istanbul, TR İstanbul As Yakası, Selected By Galeri Nev, Marmara University, Faculty of Fine Arts, Istanbul, TR
2001 Egofugal, 7th International Istanbul Biennial, cur. Yuko Hasegawa, Beylerbeyi Palace and Imperial Mint, Istanbul, TR Chaos and Communication, 10th Biennial of Young Artists from Europe and Mediterranean, Sarajevo, BIH Winds to the Future, Sabancı University Kasa Gallery, Istanbul, TR
1999 Cool, Coordinated by Giacomo Picca, London, UK


Curatorial Projects

2014 I have a feeling, A solo exhibition of works by Murat Şahinler, cur. Leyla Gediz and Misal Adnan Yıldız, Pilot Gallery and Co Pilot,
Istanbul, TR
2012 Portfolio / İrem Günaydın, solo presentation (eski studio), Nişantaşı, Istanbul, TR Artist: İrem Günaydın
2010 Leyla’s Pop-Up Gallery, Issues 001-006, XOXO The Mag Artists: Can Ertaş, İrem Günaydın, Aslı Özdemir, Kemal Özen, Mine Sübiler, Onur Uyar
2008 Galeri Splendid, September 2008 – April 2009, Art Gallery initiated and run by Leyla Gediz and Derya Demir,Beyoğlu, Istanbul, TR
Artists: Levent Aygül, Gökçen Cabadan, Nazım Hikmet Richard Dikbaş, Erdem Ergaz, Selim Eyüboğlu, Erdem Helvacıoğlu, Meriç Kara, Sefer Memişoğlu, Sevgi Ortaç, Arzu Oto, Ardan Özmenoğlu, Elçin Poyraz, İlhan Sayın, Tayfun Serttaş, Güneş Terkol
2008 Uyuyan ID / The Bitch is Sleeping, cur. Derya Demir and Leyla Gediz and, various locations along İstiklal Street, Istanbul, TR Artists: Neşe Çoğal, Özgür Çift, Paula Delgado, Brice Dellsperger, Barış Doğrusöz, Murat Ertel, Erdem Helvacıoğlu, Kaan Karacehennem, Ali Kazma, Emel Kurhan, Bruce LaBruce, Arzu Oto, Serkan Özkaya, Laura Parnes, Oliver Pietsch, Elçin Poyraz, İlhan Sayın, Tayfun Serttaş, Richard Van Loot Metaphysics / Erdem Ergaz, solo exhibition cur. Minna L. Henriksson and Leyla Gediz, studio, Nişantaşı, Istanbul, TR Artist: Erdem Ergaz People Are Made To Steal, Curated by Minna L. Henriksson and Leyla Gediz, studio, Nişantaşı, Istanbul, TR Artists: Osman Bozkurt, Antonio Cosentino, Emre Değer, Leyla Gediz, Minna L. Henriksson, İnci Furni, Kaan Karacehennem, KOP-ART, Erden Kosova, Gül Kozacıoğlu, Ferhat Özgür, Elçin Poyraz, November Paynter & Cengiz Tanç
2007 Sobe! cur. Leyla Gediz, Bilsar Building, Istanbul, TR Artists: Melis Ağazat, Semiha Balcı, Banu Birecikligil, Gökçen Cabadan, Çınar Eslek, Karolin Fişekçi, İnci Furni, Minna Henriksson, Gözde İlkin, Burçak Kaygun, Gülşah Kılıç, KOP-ART, Gül Kozacıoğlu, Tamsin Morse, Ceren Oykut, Gökçe Suvari, Güneş Terkol, Elif Uras, Nalân Yırtmaç, Pınar Yolaçan Air Pocket, Curated by Leyla Gediz, Galerist (dir. Murat Pilevneli), Istanbul, TR Artists: Levent Aygül, Tufan Baltalar, Gökcen Cabadan, Sefer Memisoglu, İlhan Sayın, Aslı Sungu, Wolfgang Tillmans, Uygur Yılmaz, Bashir Borlakov



2010 Helsinki International Artist-in-residence Programme (HIAP), Helsinki, FI Artist-in-residence FRAC, Corsica, FR

05/09/2019 - 10/11/2019
Leylâ Gediz Denizens
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