Djochkoun Sami

b. Bulgaria, 1973, currently lives and works in Istanbul, Turkey. Graduated of Mimar Sinan University of Fine Arts, Faculty of Painting, Istanbul (BFA / MFA). Regularly exhibits his work in various group shows, illustrated magazines, poetry books, and theatre posters.

Sami's paintings often incorporate architectural and historical references, while maintaining an affinity for the templates of formalist painting. His limited color palette supports his drawing-based process, making visible an effort towards achieving pictorial and formal values. His work exists in a space floating between the stylistic borders of expression and figuration. Sami frequently borrows forgotten, abandoned architectural spaces from the recent past, exposing the possibilities for the existence of anonymous, depoliticized homogeneous spaces. In some of his recent works, he strips away historicism and allusions, instead incorporating objects, rocks, organic matter, and voids that accompany a horizontally-based perception of time.

Sami's paintings reveal a cynicism towards politics, a characteristic developed from his upbringing. He employs references and motifs of modernity, progress, regress, and the grand narratives of the past. In some of his paintings, he illustrates how the political is reduced to its grotesque dimension, with power struggles, flag-waving, and the reselling of imaginary dreams. His work engages in a hauntology research of its own, exploring how the agendas of contemporary societies are shaped by ghosts of the past.


You can view & buy selected works online at

Solo Exhibitions

2024 - "In The End, There Is No End", Istanbul Concept Gallery, İstanbul, TR
2022 - "Slow Homecoming", Art Gallery Silistra, Silistra, BG
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

2023 - "#HeyFreedom", Turkish Journalists Association Museum, Istanbul, TR
2023 - "HOME", The Department Store Gallery, London, UK
2023 - "Ar(t)chive V", Istanbul Concept Gallery, Istanbul, TR
2023 - "Beginning From the Middle", Artİstanbul Feshane, Istanbul, TR
2023 - "Parrhesia III", Art Contact Art Fair, Istanbul, TR
2023 - "Equinox", Istanbul Concept Gallery, Istanbul, TR
2023 - "Parrhesia II", Ankara Art Fair, TR
2023 - "La Liberte", Istanbul Concept Studio, Istanbul, TR
2023 - "Freedom is Our Character", Istanbul Concept Gallery, Istanbul, TR
2023 - "Freedom is Your Character", Pera Palace, TR
2023 - "Democratic 100", Istanbul Concept Gallery, Istanbul, TR
2022 - "Stalker", Pera Palace, Istanbul, TR
2022 - "Winged Words / Layers IIa", Mahal, Çanakkale, TR
2022 - "Trace", Chamber of Architects of Turkey’s Gallery, Istanbul, TR
2022 - "Friends of the Sea" Biennial for Contemporary Art, Burgas, BG
2022 - "Ar(t)chive", Istanbul Concept, Istanbul, TR
2022 - "Parrhesia", ArtContact Art Fair, Istanbul, TR
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