Kale Design and Art Center (KTSM) remains focused on emphasizing the valuable creative output of female artists in ceramic art and strengthening their role in the art scene with the 'Take Care of Your World' movement. The ‘Memoirs of a Sea Urchin—Melike Abasıyanık Kurtiç’ exhibition, curated by Deniz Artun and produced by KTSM, Erimtan Archeology and Art Museum, and Ankara Galeri Nev, could be the most comprehensive Kurtiç retrospective to date.

Melike Abasıyanık Kurtiç is undoubtedly one of the most iconic names of contemporary Turkish ceramic art. The artist is known to come across as someone who ‘opens up’ forms, shells, or space itself, but according to Curator Deniz Artun, in the Memoirs of a Sea Urchin exhibition, she is presented as someone who ‘closes’, contradicting what art critics choose to write and say about her. In this exhibition, shells grow, moss spreads, and stones turn harder. Therefore, the exhibition, which features hand-made patterns, personal notes, broken sea urchins, and fresh seaweed, also offers insight into the artist’s workshop, which looks more like a naturalist’s laboratory and reveals the stages of her tedious research process. The Memoirs of a Sea Urchin exhibition looks closer at the seed ceramics, sea urchins, moss curtains, and rice papers, which are at the core of Kurtiç’s art, and the tidal photographs she took on the Portuguese coast between 1989 and 1993.

Since graduating from the Istanbul Academy of Fine Arts with a degree in Decorative Arts in 1955, Melike Abasıyanık Kurtiç has prepared many academic studies in Turkey and abroad and has received numerous awards throughout her career. Kurtiç, who passed away in 2021, was influenced by the sea urchins she found along the Çeşme coastline in the late 70s and used this form in both ceramic works and drawings, which she also started with inspiration from sea urchins. Open until September 1, 2024, the Memoirs of a Sea Urchin exhibition aims to introduce the consistency and intricate relationship between Kurtiç’s different productions.