In another book, I described how Mario introduced me to Celal of Kalamar Restaurant, which led to a fine friendship and several fabulous art projects. Always happy to draw Mario.
IN ST JACOB’S CHAPEL
A halo under Zeynep Sultan Hotel, Sultanahmet – Early in July 2007——Now closed to the public, this octagonal chapel with its monolithic center pier still had traces of fresco when I drew it. Part of the Theotokos in Chalkoprateia Church complex, it’s likely from the 5thCentury. The kindly cowled figure in the left corner is imaginary- he seemed to draw himself.
CELAL IN A STRIPED SHIRT
Celal of Kalamar in Kumkapi, who later that year sent me to Hasankeyf to draw. In 2016, he sent me to Bitlis near Lake Van, to draw his mother’s village. That story is in Book 32: In the Kingdom of Urartu.
DIKNA IN PEACH SATIN
The fabulous Rushmore face of Rana Cabbar——I don’t remember how I met Dikna, her boyfriend Attila, and their friend Rana, but I’m glad I did. We had a lot of fun together at a time when I most needed friends.
RANA’S ALL-TIME GREAT FACE
Actor Rana Cabbar speaks before he ever says a word. This portrait drew itself.
ATTILA’S BEAUTIFUL BUILDING
The most beautiful restoration in Beyoğlu – Attila’s building in Tünel——This is still true.
Bektaş – It’s humbling. He’s so happy & excited to have his picture drawn——
DIKNA AT THE GREEN HOUSE
The garden of Çelik Gulersöy’s beautiful old wooden hotel in Sultanahmet.
WILLEM THE BLACK PRINCE
From Nigeria – Pentacostal preacher on the Istiklal—— Willem is the only person I had ever seen with scarification. I’m told it means he is from what would have been the royal family of Nigeria. He was an inspired preacher with a dedicated flock before returning to Nigeria sometime in 2008.
DIKNA IN A MEADOW
<– I want to go there-—-Picknicking somewhere above the city.
DIKNA ICES REFIK
…This sweltering night in July….we are all out in front of his restaurant in Tünel——
Top of the view from Attila & Dikna’s cabin in the forest, overlooking the inlet.
DANCE IN THE WOODS
As fog rolls into the darkening afternoon I see many things I’ve never seen before – A sink in a tree – A man playing a Kamença – People dancing in the woods——
WIND IN THE LEAVES
…Rushing silence – A waking green dream – My safe place from another life. 27 July 2007