Esra Kizir Gokcen

My artistic discipline is based on the concepts more than the mediums. 

In general, I get impression from - the layers of life, from micro to wide angle; comparing the modern technology city life with the basic living in nature; looking closely at the similarities of natural textures and the human behavioural patterns, considering how and why they change and evolve in social life.

I use expressive and colourful language in my works, sometimes using the asian miniature shapes and symbols to strengthen the expression. Lately, I have been using acrylic and acrylic based side mediums which gives me the opportunity to have bold colours and spontaneous washes with determined details in lines. My latest works are mostly about immigration and cultural diversity. 


Our world is becoming smaller than ever, as if, even sailing to another land by a paper boat is possible. People are relocating, changing lives, for hope, for a better life. Fast information exchange is strengthening the motivation among the people from less developed countries to relocate.

My latest series, “Sail to Hope” focuses on effects of globalisation, especially immigration - an inspiring yet unknown journey for a hopeful future.

I used acrylics and collage as my mediums in this series particularly due to to acrylic's easy flow with water and additional acrylic based mediums which makes collage stronger. I also used authentic forms from asian miniature tradition to express the diversity in culture such as clouds. In the details I used acrylic pen to keep the spontaneity of drawing, and in my collages, I used old maps to strengthen the globalisation idea.


My intent is to awaken the hopeful adventurer, strong survivor and sense of vulnerability in everyone; let them communicate in a candid way so that we appreciate, understand and build empathy towards the citizens of the globalised new world.


Born in Istanbul 1971.

Graduated from Marmara University Fine Arts Faculty Graphic Design Department in 1993. 

Worked as graphic designer and art director in advertising agencies between 1992 – 1998.

Worked as freelance graphic designer and illustrator between 1998 – 2005.

Took pedagogical information classes in 2000-2001 period at Marmara University Atatürk Education Faculty.

Opened her own studio in Istanbul and started holding art workshops for adults and children in 2005.

Became a member at Istanbul Exlibris Academy Association in 2009.

Became a member at Lokomotive Culture and Art Association in 2010.

Worked as an art instructor and project maker in DSM Training from 2011.

Worked as the general secretary of Lokomotive Culture and Art Association between 2011 – 2016.

Became a member of Istanbul Exlibris Association in 2012.

Worked in the organisation teams of art festivals, corporate art workshops, volunteer art workshops for children, curated art exhibitions,

ran art projects for over 10 years in Istanbul. Held 5 solo exhibitions in Istanbul, Ankara and Amsterdam.

Attended around 50 group exhibitions internationally. Nominated in many juried exhibitions internationally.

One of the 6 entrepreneurs who built up the social enterprise  Living in London from the summer of 2016.

A mother of two teenagers. A keen learner of mindfulness. An art person who believes in the power of creativity, learning and sharing.

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The Artists' Pool

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Sail To Hope 9