Djochkoun Sami

Born in 1973, Bulgaria. Graduate of Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts, Faculty of Painting, Istanbul (BFA, MFA). Regularly exhibiting at various group shows, illustrated magazines, poetry books, theatre posters. Lives and works in Istanbul, Turkey.

While including architectural and historical references in his works, he also maintains an affinity for the templates of formalist painting. The limited palette supporting his drawing based process indicates and makes visible an effort towards pictorial and formal values. Floating in between stylistic borders of expression and figuration, Sami's works are frequently borrowing forgotten, abandoned architectural spaces belonging to the recent past, exposing possibilities for the existence of anonymous, depoliticized homogeneous spaces. In some of his recent works, stripped of any historicism or allusions, objects, rocks, organic matter and voids are accompanying a horizontally based perception of time.

With a cynicism characteristic of the artists grown and shaped in the totalitarian systems of Eastern Europe, Bulgaria-born Djochkoun Sami questions typical values that are taken for granted. His works employ references and motifs of modernity, progress, regress, and the grand narratives of the past. In some of his paintings, we can easily see how the political is reduced to its grotesque dimension: the game of power consists of a relentless struggle, flag-waving, and reselling of imaginary dreams. In a sense, Sami is engaged in a hauntology research of its own. After all, the agendas of contemporary societies are shaped by ghosts of the past.


You can view & buy selected works online at

Solo Exhibitions

2022 - "Sumerki", Istanbul Concept Gallery, İstanbul, TR
2021 - "Inventory", Gallery Soyut, Ankara, TR
2015 - "Playing Backwards", The Other Art Fair solo booth, London, UK
2013 - "The Contract", Mabeyn Gallery, Istanbul, TR

Group Exhibitions

2022 - "Where is your home?", Pera Palace, Istanbul, TR
2022 - "Not to Forget", Circolo di Roma, Istanbul, TR 
2021 - "Aura", Circolo di Roma, Istanbul, TR 
2021 - "10x10", Istanbul Concept, Istanbul, TR 
2020 - Step İstanbul, Istanbul, TR
2019 - "New December", Soyut, Ankara, TR 
2019 - "Highlights from the TUYAP Collection", IKUSAG, Istanbul, TR 
2018 - "The Storyteller", 28. İstanbul Art Fair, Istanbul, TR 
2018 - "River's Energy", Tedi, Varna, BG 
2017 - "Utopia: Classless-Borderless", 27. İstanbul Art Fair, Istanbul, TR 
2016 - "Unexpected Territories", 26. İstanbul Art Fair, Istanbul, TR 
2016 - "Artists' Nazim", Istanbul, TR 
2015 - "Strange Days", 25. İstanbul Art Fair, Istanbul, TR 
2015 - "Amarcord", 25. İstanbul Art Fair, Istanbul, TR 
2015 - The Other Art Fair, London, UK 
2015 - "Cold. Warm. Hot", ArtNext, Istanbul, TR 
2014 - "Dispossess", 24. İstanbul Art Fair, Istanbul, TR 
2014 - "For the Sake of Remembrance", 24. İstanbul Art Fair, Istanbul, TR 
2014 - "Focus I: Free Association", Daire, İstanbul, TR 
2013 - "Is there an Intervention?", 23. İstanbul Art Fair, Istanbul, TR 
2013 - "I Carry Everything With Me", Kolektif, 23. İstanbul Art Fair, Istanbul, TR 
2013 - "How Green Was My Valley (From the beginning until today, landscape in Turkish painting)", Istanbul, TR 
2012 - "Sorry, I Couldn't Recognize You", Port-Art, Ankara, TR 
2012 - "Draft", Mabeyn Gallery, Istanbul, TR 
2011 - "Scratches on the Surface", Art Suites, Istanbul, TR 
2010 - "Very Beautiful", İstanbul 2010 - European Capital of Culture, "Portable Art" exhibition series, Istanbul, TR 
2010 - "Curiosity and Suspicion", Kent Gallery, Istanbul, TR 
2010 - "Cold Element", Akademililer Sanat Merkezi, Istanbul, TR 
2009 - "Fake Safari", Kolektif, 19. İstanbul Art Fair, Istanbul, TR 
2009 - "Hayalet: My Name is Casper", Karşı Sanat Çalışmaları, Istanbul, TR 
2008 - "Water!=Shining?", Cappadocia Art Festival, Mustafapaşa, TR 
2006 - Cappadocia Art Festival, Mustafapaşa, TR 
2001 - "SERG!", Group Albatros, Asmalimescit Minare Sk. No.15, Istanbul, TR


Education

2011, MFA, Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts, Faculty of Painting, Istanbul
2004, BFA, Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts, Faculty of Painting, Istanbul