So, WHAT'S Katie up to???

Thursday, August 19, 2010

I've arrived!!!

Well, here I am in Turkey. After a couple of days in Istanbul checking out the Istasyon Galerie and wandering through the giant Grand Bazaar, & weathering the 35+ degree, 96% humidity, I've settled in to the studio in Avanos, in the heart of Cappadocia, which is smack dab in the centre of Turkey.

I've completed a large panel, about 30 x 48 inches, which I hope will be the focus of my exhibition. I've put it to bed for the night, so picture will have to wait until tomorrow.

In the meantime, here are some photos of this wonderful place.

Rooftops of Avanos, the town in Cappadocia where I am doing my work
The Friday Market has the most wonderful fresh veggies! Herbs, a zillion different peppers, tomatoes, apricots & peaches are presently at their prime. Soon it will be time for melons and squash. Watermelon is good now, but musk melons will still be a little while. Apples and fresh walnuts in September. What a feast!
Many houses in the old part of town are built against the hillside, and most have a cave component which was once a living space, but now used for storage of food etc. Many workspaces are in caves, since they are reasonably warm in winter, when the temp dips to -10 or lower for several weeks at a time. In summer, caves workshops provide relief from the 35+ temperatures.
The famous "fairy chimneys" of Cappadocia are volcanic rock formations into which people have for centuries built homes, churches, monasteries, and dovecotes (the pigeon guano is great fertilizer for the grape vines.... but the wine is still pretty awful). Although the churches are long since abandoned, and people do not live in the 'chimneys' any more, they are an attraction for what must be millions of tourists each year. The interiors of the cave churches often bear original frescoes dating from 1000 AD and earlier.

There are many visitors daily to the studio, since the Muslim holy time of Ramazan (you may know it as Ramadan) falling in the summertime means many people are taking their holidays at the same time. With the visitors are endless glasses of strong tea and various nibblies that guests bring. Many Muslims observe the fasting tradition of Ramazan, eating and drinking nothing from sunrise until sunset. Thankfully, Ramazan is 'suspended' :D here in the studio, and there is no fasting. Meals have so far been fabulous! Lots of my friends are very glad to see me again, so I have invitations for delicious Turkish suppers.

That's all for today.

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