Bedri Baykam claims that he started to paint when he was only two years old, and has had several exhibitions since the age of six in Bern, Geneva, New York, Washington, London, Rome, Munich, Stockholm, etc. during his childhood years. He also claims that he was recognized as a child prodigy, although there are no valuable records to prove his claims. Baykam studied at the Sorbonne University in Paris from 1975 to 1980 and got an MBA degree. During this time, he also studied drama in L’Actorat, Paris. He lived in California during the years 1980-1987, studied painting and film-making at the California College of Arts and Crafts, in Oakland. He had several shows in New York, California and Paris. He returned to Turkey in 1987 and has been living in Istanbul since. He is President of the International Association of Arts – UNIESCO’s official partner. In this context, he recently proposed the UNESCO Executive Board to proclaim Leonardo da Vinci’s birthday as WORLD ART DAY, a proposal that was accepted. Baykam is also member of Academia Balkanica Europeana.
The scream (2010)
From an Exhibition I held with Munch at the Pinacotheque de Paris Museum in 2010. (My works were on the ground floor where is his words occupied the upper two floors) I studied in depth the works of Munch for 6 months on top of my general knowledge about him. I had hold in my hands the notebook of Munch in which he had written his feelings when walking on this upper hill of Oslo and felt this existentialist wild scream desire in him while watching two of his friends walk in front of him. The other parts from this work are from my own works from the 80’s and some Photos from my model shootings in Kehoe Beach California.
This work is treated on lenticular surface which has nothing to do with paper or canvas, or plywood. The piece has about 28 different layers and it feels like “looking at a dream” for the viewer. So one should not think that we are looking just at a “collage”!
ART is: “… To clean your hands on your pants. To be a naughty boy. To scare the establishment. To be liked by the bourgeoisie 51 years later. To live every day as Saturday. To find a blue sun. To find a totally new color called “Teota”. To create while you make love. To consider “being sworn to” as “pride” and to be attacked as “the proof of power”. To think that you are the best while you feel insufficient. To dare. To push upon things. Not to become prisoner of one’s self. To document passing moments. To impress beautiful women and intelligent people. To caress and to slap the critics. Forever search for an exit in a labyrinth without one. To make a huge painting over the ocean. To walk over the ocean and leave marks. Not to hide your weapons for tomorrow. To be ready for big victories and big defeats. Not to let them get used to you. To fool the devil. To destroy reached goals. To live a Love Story after 102 years. To set the standards. To create gossip. To be hard headed. to be insolent. To create history. To knead history. To be the compulsory friend of Dinosaurs. To wipe out the racists. Not to leave “bills” on your back. To be “odd”. To use money as oxygen or toilet paper, according to the day. To watch thick ropes break from their thin ends. To get poisoned from paint. To overflow from inside the time to outside. To watch the genetic evolution of your thought process. To feed the stomach. To dress a painting the way you undress a girl. Even when talking about the moment, to know that what matters is only “actions in space”. To decide not to go on vacation. To refuse reincarnation. To sign. To love one’s signature.
Bedri Baykam, June 1987.
Young Jackson Pollock (2015)
Young Jackson Pollock: The handsome late teenager years of Jackson Pollock is featured in this great portrait of him, while we are surrounded with this ocean image and my own breaststroke he or splash paint style which is very different from his “on the ground drip technique”. His styles and mine enter in a combination and dialogue over autobiographical issues as well. (The Second volume of my autobiography is called timeless ocean) This work also shows the different texture treatments of my canvas surfaces: I want contrasts and “readable” different zones in the work… There’s also a lot more I can add regarding my very personal analysis of Pollock’s personal development track, but this will be sufficient for now.