Ahmet Ertug by Thierry Grillet

Ahmet Ertug is a photographer acknowledged around the world for the get the job done he has been conducting for forty decades around main heritage architectures, whether spiritual or cultural. Immediately after getting worked as an architect, he devoted himself completely to images. Winner of a Japanese scholarship, he contracted, throughout his just one-calendar year trip to the Japanese archipelago, a enthusiasm for heritage, and 1st of all the architectures of the sacred, by means of the discovery he built of the excellent religious sites of the country. Back in Turkey in the 1970s, mindful of the will need to protect the memory of the great web pages then deserted, he embarked on a extensive marketing campaign of images of Byzantine, Ottoman and Islamic heritage in Turkey and Iran. Far more broadly, from Hagia Sophia to Istanbul, to Saint Peter in the Vatican, Ahmet Ertug travelled the environment in search of the most wonderful illustrations of historical architecture – Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman or Christian – illustrating the 3 rules set up by the theorist Vitruvius: longevity (firmitas), usefulness (utilitas), and magnificence (venustas). By employing big structure cameras, negatives the dimension of his subjects (25×25 cm), with very long exposures, and drawing on the skills of his architectural eye, Ertug restored in his shots what can make an architecture monumental and what contributes in its smallest element to the spirit of the spot.

The artist places all his energy into preventing in opposition to time but also capturing what time provides to these monuments devoted to worship (spots of prayer), to artwork (museums, palaces), to songs ( music salons, concert halls) and composed heritage (libraries). For Ahmet Ertug, “many of these wonderful volumes that my pictures records have been returned to the general public as a result of photography or painting for centuries there is absolutely nothing new. But what I bring which is new is the singular romance of a man to these amazing spaces, relying on a photograph geared up for a dialogue with the monumental. These experiences, these aesthetic or non secular thoughts that arise from the contemplation of these distinctive areas, I try to share them with the public”.

Ahmet Ertug is a formalist who likes perspectives, columns, domes, the way the eye rushes forward towards an suitable point (the vanishing stage) where by the watch disappears, hence tipping into a further dimension. He also enjoys the luxuriance of particulars in the decor – mosaics, frescoes, painted ceilings, sculpted or ornate moldings. Possibly this extraordinary impression good quality owes its existence to the 20×25 cm negatives that he employs with his significant format Sinar p2, a modernized generation of the old cameras equipped with a wood chamber and a copper lens. But it also owes even a lot more, in a more immaterial way, to the fact that the photographer’s gaze melts into his item, delicate to the totality of the get the job done designed. “I abide by in the footsteps of the architect who developed what I see. Then I question where by this male, from whom I am separated by centuries, would have posted himself to ponder his work. Only then do I settle down. The total soul of the place is so resurrected in my 1st graphic. »

Thierry Grillet


Ahmet Ertug was offered at Paris-Image 2021 by Bruce Silverstein Gallery (New York)