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Zehra Say

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Fatma Zehra Bilgin Say
BornFebruary 18, 1906 (84)
Ankara, Ottoman Empire
DiedDecember 16, 1990 (84)
Istanbul, Turkey
NationalityTurkish Ottoman Empire
Known forPainting, Being the first officially married Turkish woman
MovementNaturalism[1]
Spouse(s)Fuat Say (m. 1926)

Zehra Say (1906 – 1990) was a Turkish painter and first Turkish woman to be officially married under the 1926 Civil Marriage law.[3] She is known as one of the pioneering women of Atatürks Turkey for her modern look on womens equality.[4] As an artist she is known for her paintings of nature, flowers and fruits. Her great love of nature reflected in her paintings as she depicted Istanbul in a different light. Her work is described as an realistic interpretation of nature.[1] She is the mother of painter Emel Say and grandmother of pianist Fazil Say.[3]

Life[edit | edit source]

Zehra Say was born in 1906 in Ankara as Fatma Zehra Bilgin.[2] In 1925, she graduated from the Izmir Teacher School. After graduating from high school, she married the mathematics teacher, Fuat Say, on 18 February 1926. This was the first official wedding to, and Say therefore officially became the first Turkish woman to be married.[5] They had two children together; Emel and Arkan Say.

After she was married, she continued her education at the Istanbul Fine Arts Academy (Turkish: İstanbul Devletlet Güzel Sanatlar Akademisi, İDGSA). She was educated in the atelier of Namık İsmail at the Painting Department of the academy, which she graduated from in 1929. After that, she became a painting teacher. While she was teaching painting at the İstanbul Cağaloğlu Girls' High School, she continued to study in the Decorative Arts Department of the Fine Arts Academy. She continued to teach art for 36 years, and between 1960 and 1970 went to the United States for some time to work on painting there.[3][6]

Say did not open an exhibition for a long time, her first exhibition was in 1982 in Istanbul at A Galeri.[6] She later had other exhibitions as well.[7] These include ten personal exhibitions and many mixed exhibitions.

Due to Alzheimer's disease, she was not able to finish the painting titled Maui Adası ("Island of Maui"). She asked her daughter, Emel Say, who finished the painting for her.[5] At that point, Emel Say was not a painter yet, however, she finished the painting and it was displayed at an exhibition where it was spotted by the famous sculptor Gürdal Duyar, who reassured Emel that she had done a good job, which may have started her career in painting.[8]

Zehra Say died in 1990.[9][10] She was the paternal grandmother of pianist Fazıl Say [5]

Marriage[edit | edit source]

On 18 February 1926[11] when she was 20 years old, while she was a teacher already, she married her husband Fuat Say who was also a teacher. The Turkish Civil Law on marriage was passed the day before on 17 February 1926. Their marriage certificate is written in old Turkish[12]; Atatürk would introduce the new alphabet in 1928. The witnesses to the marriage where the deputy of Bolu and owner of the Kavaklıdere wine Tunalı Hilmi and the Deputy of Erzurum (Erzurum Mebusu) Mahmut Bey. This marriage is known as the first official marriage in the history of the Republic of Turkey.[13][14][15]

The article on official weddings (Turkish: "resmi nikahla evlenilmesi") in the new Civil Law was prepared by the first Minister of Justice of Turkey Mahmut Esat Bozkurt.[16]

The sculpture at the entrance of the Marriage Office at Izmir International Fair, depicting two doves, was erected in 2002 by the Izmir Metropolitan Municipality in honor of Zehra and Fuat Say for being the first officially married couple. The sculpture, which sits on a white marble foundation, is made from poured bronze and also depicts two interlocked wedding rings representing the unity of a woman and man in marriage. The sculpture was designed by the Izmir-born sculptor Bihrat Mavitan.[16]

Painting[edit | edit source]

Say is known for her depictions of Istanbul from a nature perspective. She painted still life and landscapes.[17][8][1] Her work is described as realistic interpretations of nature. Other Turkish artists in this category include Şükriye Dikmen, Adnan Varınca Naile Akıncı, Şeref Bigalı, Cemil Eren, Kainat Barkan Pajonk, Muammer Öner, İbrahim Bozkuş, Oya Kınıklı, Fahrettin Baykal and Aysu Koçak.[18]

Recognitions[edit | edit source]

During his term as the Turkish Minister of Youth and Sport, Avni Akyol awarded Say with a plaque of recognition for her 50 year long service to Turkish art.[13]

The 2016 documentary by Tarık Akan, Atatürk'ün Alev Çiçekleri, is about the reforms relating to women during the foundation of the Turkish Republic and follows the stories of the first generation of women of the Turkish Republic. The documentary follows the story of Zehra Say, Sabiha Gökçen, Muazzez İlmiye Çığ, Nüzhet Gökdoğan, Jale İnan, Halet Çambel, and Afet İnan during these early years of the Republic.[19]

Exhibitions[edit | edit source]

Personal[edit | edit source]

  • A Galeri, Istanbul (1982)[6]
  • Moda Deniz Kulübü Sanat Galerisi (Feb, 2 1985)[20][21][22]
  • Sevgi ve doğa [Love and Nature], Tanak Art Gallery (December 1989)[23]

Collaborative[edit | edit source]

  • Yaratıcı Türk Kadınından Esintiler[Breeze of Creative Turkish Women], Atatürk Cultural Center (8 – 11 April 1987)[24]
  • 20. Yüzyılında İlk Yarısında Türk Kadın Ressamlarından[Turkish Women Painters of the First Half of the 20th century], Yıldız University Yüksel Sabancı Art Center (Apr, 21 1992)[25]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Latife Esra İNCEL (2004). CUMHURİYETİN İLANINDAN GÜNÜMÜZE TÜRK RESMİNDE KÖY VE KÖY YAŞANTISININ RESİM EĞİTİMİNE KATKISI (PDF) (Report) (in Türkçe). Konya: Selçuk University. p. 29. Retrieved 19 April 2018. Doğaya olan büyük sevgisini üstün bir teknikle natüralist anlayış içinde yorumlamış olan Zehra Say, biçimsel olarak gerçeğe uygun olan yapıtlarında İstanbul’un değişik açıdan görüntülerini duyarlı bir biçimde tuvaline yansıtmıştır. Doğanın sanata en yakın objesi “Çiçek”tir diyen Adnan Varınca, tablolarında çiçekleri ve meyveleri yeniden büyütüp olgunlaştırmıştır. Çizgi ve desene önem vererek figüre ve doğa gerçeklerine bağlı kalan bir diğer sanatçı da Şeref Bigalı’dır. Gerçekçi doğa yorumlarında bulunan diğer sanatçılar arasında Nihat Akyunak, Naile Akıncı, Turan Erol, Salih Acar bulunmaktadır.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Cikar, Jutta (1 January 2004). Türkischer Biographischer Index [Turkish Biographical Index]. Walter de Gruyter. p. 884. ISBN 3110965771.ISBN 9783110965773
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Şahamettin Kuzucular (16 September 2015). "Zehra Say( 1906 İstanbul – 2004 ten sonra )". edebiyatvesanatakademisi.com (in Türkçe). Retrieved 19 April 2018.
  4. "Resmi nikâhla evlenen ilk Türk kadını Zehra Say" (in Türkçe). Cumhuriyet. 14 June 1987. p. 6 – via Cumhuriyet Arşivi. See:Talk:Zehra_Say
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 "Yarım kalan ada tablosu tamamlandı". Hürriyet (in Türkçe). 2004-12-14. Retrieved 2018-05-06.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 "Zehra Say". TurkishPaintings.com (in Türkçe). Retrieved 19 April 2018.
  7. "Minyatürde Gemiler" (PDF). HorHor (in Türkçe). 1991. Retrieved 19 April 2018.
  8. 8.0 8.1 "Yarım kalan ada tablosu tamamlandı" (in Turkish). Hürriyet. 14 December 2004. Retrieved 19 April 2018.CS1 maint: Unrecognized language (link)
  9. "Yüzyıl başlarında 21 kadın ressam" (in Türkçe). 21 April 1992. p. 11. 001508121006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 11 May 2015. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
  10. "Resmi nikâh öncüsü" (in Türkçe). Milliyet. 22 May 1990. p. 1. Retrieved 12 May 2018. |section= ignored (help)
  11. Özdil, Yılmaz (2 March 2016). "90 yillik enkaz oyle mi?" (in Türkçe). Sözcü. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
  12. Menteşoğlu, Behman (October 2016). "Evet mi? Hayır mı?, Evlilik zor, bekârlık hoş zanaat!". Este Magazin (in Türkçe). No. 6. Academy Istanbul Education and Culture Foundation. p. 53. Retrieved 12 May 2018.
  13. 13.0 13.1 Baki Sarısakal. TÜRKİYE CUMHURİYETİ'NDE İLK RESMİ NİKÂH (PDF) (Report) (in Türkçe). Retrieved 5 May 2018.
  14. Aydoğan, Tolga (2017). "Türkiye'deki İlk Resmi Nikah". tolgaaydogan.com (in Türkçe). Retrieved 5 May 2018.
  15. Uysal, Erhan (2 August 2017). "Cumhuriyet tarihimizde ilk resmi nikâh" (in Türkçe). Kocaeli. Barış. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
  16. 16.0 16.1 "Fuar'da Çifte Kumrular Heykeli açıldı". izmir.bel.tr (in Turkish). İzmir Metropolitan Municipality. 1 May 2002. Retrieved 12 May 2018.CS1 maint: Unrecognized language (link)
  17. "Zehra Say". altasanat.com. Alta Sanat. 2016. Retrieved 12 May 2018.
  18. "ÇAĞDAŞ TÜRK SANATI TARİHİ" [HISTORY OF CONTEMPORARY TURKISH ART] (PDF). megep.meb.gov.tr (in Türkçe). Ankara: Ministry of National Education. 2012. Retrieved 12 May 2018.
  19. "Atatürk'ün Alev Çiçekleri". kameraarkasi.org (in Türkçe). Nâzım Hikmet Kültür ve Sanat Vakfı. Retrieved 12 May 2018.
  20. "UMİT1 Avustralyalı Naıf Ressam ZEHRA SAY Retnnetfctif S Ocak 2 Sutot 1985 MODA Dentz Kulubu Galens" (in Türkçe). Cumhuriyet. 9 January 1985. p. 5. Retrieved 12 May 2018 – via Cumhuriyet Arşivi [Cumhuriyet Archive].
  21. "ZEHRA Say'ın Moda Deniz Kulübü'ndeki..." (in Türkçe). Cumhuriyet. 21 January 1985. p. 4. Retrieved 12 May 2018 – via Cumhuriyet Arşivi [Cumhuriyet Archive].
  22. "Moda Deniz Kulübü Sanat Galerisi". istanbul.net.tr (in Türkçe). 29 January 2013. Retrieved 12 May 2018.
  23. "Sevgi ve doğa". Tempo. No. 52. Istanbul. 24 December 1989. p. 76. |access-date= requires |url= (help)
  24. GÜVENER 2015, p. 259.
  25. GÜVENER 2015, p. 271.

Sources[edit | edit source]


This article "Zehra Say" is from Wikipedia. The list of its authors can be seen in its historical and/or the page Edithistory:Zehra Say. Articles copied from Draft Namespace on Wikipedia could be seen on the Draft Namespace of Wikipedia and not main one.


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