Fikret Otyam

Who is Fikret Otyam? (1926-2015)

Fikret Oytam became known for the interviews he wrote about Anatolia and Southeastern Anatolia. He collected these interviews in many books. He depicted Anatolian people on his canvases, as well as in his interviews and photographs. He often used goats and head-covered Anatolian women as figures. He described Anatolian women as having big eyes, small noses and small mouths.

He was born in Aksaray in 1926. His father is a soldier and pharmacist Vasıf Efendi, and his mother is Naciye Hanım. He had two older brothers named Nedim and Nusret Kemal; He also had a sister named Neşecan. His father, Vasıf Efendi, one of İsmet İnönü’s comrades, worked as a pharmacist in Aksaray after retiring from the army. Otyam, who completed his primary and secondary education in Aksaray, continued his high school education intermittently in Ankara and Kayseri.

After high school, he went to Istanbul and continued his education at the State Academy of Fine Arts, Higher Secondary Painting Department, and took lessons at the workshop of the famous painter Bedri Rahmi Eyüboğlu. She graduated in 1953. He got married the same year, and his daughter Elvan was born the following year. From this marriage, he had two more daughters named İrep and Döne.

He started journalism in the Son Saat newspaper in 1950, while he was still a student at the State Academy of Fine Arts. He became the assistant of the writer and Editor-in-Chief Ali İhsan Göğüş in the Dünya newspaper published by Falih Rıfkı Atay; Then he worked at Ulus newspaper.
Otyam, who traveled to Southeastern and Eastern Anatolia for the first time in 1953, became known for the interviews he wrote about Anatolia and Southeastern Anatolia throughout his journalism life. He collected these interviews in many books. He visited Bitlis with William Saroyan in 1964. He separated from his first wife and married artist Filiz Otyam in 1977.

Otyam, who worked as a columnist in Cumhuriyet newspaper for many years; After the murder of Abdi İpekçi, he decided to retire, thinking that his own life was in danger. He built a house next to Deliçay, under the Selinus Castle in Antalya's Gazipaşa district, and concentrated on painting and publishing his books in this house, where he settled with his wife Filiz Otyam in 1979. Finally, he worked as a columnist in Aydınlık newspaper.

He is one of the founding members of the Mediterranean Journalism Foundation and the Golden Orange Culture and Arts Foundation. Fikret Otyam, who had been treated for a while due to kidney failure, died on August 9, 2015 in Antalya. Otyam's body was buried in the "Leaving Mark Intellectuals Cemetery" in Hacıbektaş district of Nevşehir.
After his death, a memorial ceremony was held for Otyam at Çankaya Contemporary Arts Center.

art exhibitions
1947 - 1953 Exhibitions with "The Group of Ten"
1976 Human Scenes from My Homeland
1978 Human Landscapes
1987 - 1997 Joint domestic and international painting and weaving exhibitions with Filiz Otyam
1962 Journalists Association Press Certificate of Honor
1980 - 1990 Press Certificate of Honor of the Decade
1995 Ataturkist Thought Association Honor Plaque
Istanbul State Academy of Fine Arts Photography Institute Certificate of Honor
1996 3rd Hacı Bektaş Veli Friendship and Peace Award
Pir Sultan Abdal Certificate of Honor
UNESCO AIAP Türkiye National Committee International Plastic Arts Association Certificate of Honor
Akdeniz University Certificate of Honor
Şanlıurfa Culture Education Art Research Foundation Certificate of Honor
1998: Presidential Culture and Arts Grand Prize

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