A Süphan on Lake Van

A Suphan for Celal -©2016 TriciVenola— Project patron Celal Ögmen grew up in this village a few decades ago. He came to Istanbul as a teenager. He stood outside a prosperous fish restaurant in Kumkapi: Kalamar, saying in to the tourists in all their languages, “Come here and eat fish.” Now he owns the restaurant and the one next door, educates his daughter in New York, is a cornerstone of local industry and a patron of the arts. One brother is a judge, the other a barrister in New York. You can do anything with brains and moxie.

A Suphan for Celal -©2016 TriciVenola— Project patron Celal Ögmen grew up in this village a few decades ago. He came to Istanbul as a teenager. He...
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Plein air drawing of a village near A Suphan
A Süphan on Lake Van Framed Print
A Suphan for Celal -©2016 TriciVenola— Project patron Celal Ögmen grew up in this village a few decades ago. He came to Istanbul as a teenager. He stood outside a prosperous fish restaurant in Kumkapi: Kalamar, saying in to the tourists in all their languages, “Come here and eat fish.” Now he owns the restaurant and the one next door, educates his daughter in New York, is a cornerstone of local industry and a patron of the arts. One brother is a judge, the other a barrister in New York. You can do anything with brains and moxie.
A Suphan for Celal -©2016 TriciVenola— Project patron Celal Ögmen grew up in this village a few decades ago. He came to Istanbul as a teenager. He...
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Plein air drawing of traditional Turkish women with girl
BAHAR & HER MOTHER

Bahar and her mother 24 April- Derya Hanife -©2016 TriciVenola— At the family enclave, a tree-lined grassy enclosure with houses and sheep. Here also is Hanife the first time I saw her, drawn from life with her granddaughter Derya. The whole Buday family knocked themselves out to make me welcome. Bahar’s mother had decked her out in this red dress and shoes. Adorable!

Bahar and her mother 24 April- Derya Hanife -©2016 TriciVenola— At the family enclave, a tree-lined grassy enclosure with houses and sheep. Here...
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Drawing of a shepherd in an Eastern Turkish village
DAPPER SHEPHERD
Dapper Shepherd at Harmantepe  -©2016 TriciVenola — What the well-dressed shepherd shall wear on a rainy day in the mountain village: Biblical shepherd’s crook, copious umbrella, rifle, cigarette and neon green tennis shoes. A friend of Ridvan’s, it was his flock we stopped for at Harmantepe, and I got this drawing. The sheep look like troops behind a general. I love this drawing.
Dapper Shepherd at Harmantepe  -©2016 TriciVenola — What the well-dressed shepherd shall wear on a rainy day in the mountain village: Biblical s...
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Plein air drawing of a shepherd boy holding a sheep
HAPPY SHEPHERD
“Happy to be a shepherd” in Karaseyh Köy -30 April -©2016 TriciVenola He dropped out of school- said he’d rather be a happy shepherd than study. He’s ten. — This was relayed to me by a dismayed Ezra. The kid refused to learn to read, even, and his parents allowed him to leave. But he and the sheep do look happy!
“Happy to be a shepherd” in Karaseyh Köy -30 April -©2016 TriciVenola He dropped out of school- said he’d rather be a happy shepherd than st...
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Harmantepe
Harmantepe- very wet cold day -1May -©2016 TriciVenola — Another cousin of Celal’s, Ridvan, showed up at the hotel to take me at last to the village I’d come to draw, up in the mountains above Adilcevaz. We drove through misty rain under lowering clouds, with these four mountains brooding in front of us all the way: dark and implacable. On the way, we stopped for a flock of sheep, and I got out and took a photograph of this village. I was able to get this drawing later. It took hours, and the rain would have made it impossible in any case.
Harmantepe- very wet cold day -1May -©2016 TriciVenola — Another cousin of Celal’s, Ridvan, showed up at the hotel to take me at last to the vi...
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Plein air drawing of a remote village in Eastern Turkey
Harmantepe Framed Print
Harmantepe- very wet cold day -1May -©2016 TriciVenola — Another cousin of Celal’s, Ridvan, showed up at the hotel to take me at last to the village I’d come to draw, up in the mountains above Adilcevaz. We drove through misty rain under lowering clouds, with these four mountains brooding in front of us all the way: dark and implacable. On the way, we stopped for a flock of sheep, and I got out and took a photograph of this village. I was able to get this drawing later. It took hours, and the rain would have made it impossible in any case.
Harmantepe- very wet cold day -1May -©2016 TriciVenola — Another cousin of Celal’s, Ridvan, showed up at the hotel to take me at last t...
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Plein air drawing of poplar trees in Van
KAVAK TREES IN VAN
Grand Deniz Turizm Restaurant last stop before Akdamar -3 May  ©2016 TriciVenola —Who knew I was allergic to poplar trees? I love them— but sometime since they chopped down every single one in Istanbul, I developed an allergy. Once I went into a pharmacy and described the symptoms, they fixed me right up with a syrup and some pills. These are planted in rows just at the pier for the boats to Aghtamar Island in Lake Van, where I wanted to go.
Grand Deniz Turizm Restaurant last stop before Akdamar -3 May  ©2016 TriciVenola —Who knew I was allergic to poplar trees? I love them— but so...
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KEF KALESI ADILCEVAZ 

Kef Kalesi, Adilcevaz, Van c1500 BCE Ulu Camii c1300 CE-©2016 TriciVenola— This majestic ruin of an ancient city permits an entire mountain rising at the edge of Lake Van. Archeologists have removed ancient artifacts to the museum in Van. Each terrace held houses, and the rooftops of one level were the balconies of the next. At right, you can see fragments of old stonework, traces of huge arches and passages. At centre is Ulu Camii, a 700 year old mosque with a modern glass minaret. Sheep graze below what must have been the fortress an entire village.

Kef Kalesi, Adilcevaz, Van c1500 BCE Ulu Camii c1300 CE-©2016 TriciVenola— This majestic ruin of an ancient city permits an entire mountain rising ...
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KEF KALESI DOORS

Doors Kef Kales - Adilcevaz -A c3000-year-old doorway. Fascinated by the way this rock ages. It looks like the ancient Urartians scored the living rock and created a castle out of the very mountain. There is a legend of treasure hidden here, but no one knows where. I think we’re looking at it.  -©2016 TriciVenola — These doors lead to tunnels going throughout the mountain. In addition to the usual rumours of treasure, Abdullah told me that they are well-explored by archeologists. Things found there are in the Archeological Museum in Van.

Doors Kef Kales - Adilcevaz -A c3000-year-old doorway. Fascinated by the way this rock ages. It looks like the ancient Urartians scored the living roc...
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Plein air drawing of traditional Turkish family
KELEŞ FAMILY

Keles Family Adilcevaz Derya Turan Bey Nürgül Karen Abdullah Omer -The best meatballs I ever ate. -©2016 TriciVenola — Abdullah is a cousin of my patron, Celal. He and his family picked me up at the airport bus in Van and took me home to dinner. His mother, smiling here right of centre, made from a secret family recipe: meatballs like malt balls, with liquid soft centers. Highly addictive! Abdullah’s wife Derya is in the university at Van. HIs brother Omer is principal at a village school that serves three towns.

Keles Family Adilcevaz Derya Turan Bey Nürgül Karen Abdullah Omer -The best meatballs I ever ate. -©2016 TriciVenola — Abdullah is a cousin of...
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Plein air drawing of Lake Van
LAKE VAN

The ancients gazed at these mountains from this forever sacred place 22 April 2016 Lake Van in front of Ulu Camii- Adilcevaz  -©2016 TriciVenola — Mere pen and ink does not begin to do justice to the symphony of white mountains floating above the pale lake. But the attempt — if you’re lucky— is art.

The ancients gazed at these mountains from this forever sacred place 22 April 2016 Lake Van in front of Ulu Camii- Adilcevaz  -©2016 TriciVenola...
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