Assoc. Prof. Dr. Plamen Dimitrov Shulikov, Shoumen University “Episkop Constantine Preslavski” Assoc. Prof. Dr. Yordanka Bibina, Institute for Balkan Studies & Center of Thracology, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Evdokia Borisova, Shumen University “Constantine Preslavski”
Abstract: The text represents interdisciplinary study that interprets the image of the city through verbal and visual optics of narrators Orhan Pamuk, photographer Ara Guler and artist Devrim Erbil. In his book “Istanbul. Memories and the City” Pamuk emphase on visually painted Istanbul and the city-picture (in lines with Kenneth Clark’s “Looking at Pictures”, 1960). Istanbul is molded by brush in black and white pattern in the engravings of Antoine Melling; with light in photographs of Ara Guler and impressive projections of strong colours and dazzling vibrations of Devrim Erbil’s broad-scale canvasses. Pictures of Melling and Guler as interpreted in Pamuk’s novel are in black and white while images of Devrim Erbil’s are colored in dominant blue, red, yellow, green. It is in his abstract, modern, sometimes “out of our time” paintings that we are in quest for amplification and continuation of Pamuk’s narrative. The city as an important civilizational topos (as seen by Fernand Braudel) and a key subject in philosophy and poetics of space is seen here from an unexpected angle – as a space lacking a center; not just as a museum or a palimpsest, but as a momentary impression and synesthesia experience, as a huge question mark in quest of own Balkan-European identity. Not just as in black and white engraving techniques or classical photo-plastics, neither in the deeply rooted mental stereotype of Ottoman tradition of hues and colors, but also as a canvas of modern Western European painting but much more as a framed picture.
Key words: Balkan-European identity , mental stereotype, narrators Orhan Pamuk, photographer Ara Guler, artist Devrim Erbil