In her artworks, Füsun Onur generally researches the potentials of space, time, rhythm and form that are inherent in simple and everyday materials. After her geometric drawings and minimal sculptures with abstract forms in her early years, she has adopted new strategies in order to expand the boundaries between painting and sculpture. Over the years, her work has gradually broken out of the logic of the solid piece in favor of installations in which a diversifying range of materials make their appearance. Her work embraces quotidian, narrative and even autobiographical elements. “Slightly diverting the function and use of the materials with which they are made, Füsun Onur’s works mold the spaces in which they are installed. (…) Making use of the most common objects, and relying on their potential to aggregate in associations able to talk of the social from even their innermost details, Onur realizes sculptures and installations that do not necessarily declare themselves as art but that are nonetheless able to affect the viewer’s perception. Through an often playful disposition of elements that is, however, capable of brushing against subjects such as a child’s perception of war or Turkey’s geopolitical situation, Onur realizes works that according to her own definition can be seen as ‘rhythmic extensions of forms’.” (Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev)
After graduating from Üsküdar American Academy for Girls in 1956, Füsun Onur started studying Sculpture in the Academy of Fine Arts and became a student at Hadi Bara Atelier. Onur continued her education at the Maryland College of Art with a Fulbright scholarship in 1960 and graduated from the sculpture department. The artist held her first solo exhibition at Taksim Art Gallery in 1970, followed by her exhibitions in a number of art spaces including Academy of Fine Arts (1977), the 1st, 4th, 12th and 14th Istanbul Biennials (1987, 1995, 2011, 2015), Atatürk Cultural Center (AKM, 1990-1991), Istanbul Painting and Sculpture Museum (1992) and Maçka Art Gallery (1987, 1991, 1995, 2001, 2012, 2016). Onur was invited to dOCUMENTA in 2012 where her works “Untitled” and “Dance of the Crows” were displayed. Her extensive solo show curated by Emre Baykal, titled “Through the Looking Glass” took place at Arter in 2014. The artist has participated in numerous international exhibitions including art spaces in Sweden, Macedonia, Netherlands, France, Germany. Some of the important international museum collections that feature her works are Arter (Istanbul), Tate Modern (London), Van Abbemuseum (Eindhoven), Centre National des Arts Plastiques (Paris) and MAK Vienna. Onur is considered among the leading artists contributing to the expansion of the discipline of installation and sculpture and its enrichment with new debates. Füsun Onur lives and work in Istanbul.