Ataman contributes to the theater festival

ISTANBUL – Hürriyet Daily News
Kutlu? Ataman gives his first performance Saturday at Galata’s Greek School.
Kutlu? Ataman, the most influential Turkish contemporary artist active in the international arena, is taking part in the Istanbul Theater Festival with a special project titled “S?lsel.”

The artist gave his first performance Saturday at Galata’s Greek School. The show will continue to be performed at the school through May 30. The word “S?lsel” is thought to mean the fluttering of wings in Aramaic, the language spoken by Jesus and the original language of the Bible. The Syriac language is a variant of Aramaic, which was also the language in which Eastern Christianity was diffused.

“S?lsel” is a depiction of the sky painted on ceilings of old Syriac houses in Mardin, which takes the form of a rectangular pattern with zigzag lines in tones of turquoise. According to legend, oppressed Syriacs, fearing to set foot on the street, would paint this pattern on the ceiling of their homes to alleviate their deep yearning for the real sky. “S?lsel” is a collaborative weaving of the one common sky we yearn to live under with no fear.