- Sun, 24 Jan 2021 09:23:13 +0330
Turhan Selçuk was born in Milas in 1922. His first cartoons were published in Türk Sözü in Adana and Kırmızı Beyaz ve Şut in Istanbul in 1941. He founded a caricature association with Semih Balcioğlu and Ferit Öngören and started working as a cartoonist for magazines such as Şaka, Akbaba, Tasvir and Aydede in 1948. The following year he joined the Yeni İstanbulnewspaper, for which he wrote a series of articles on the history of caricature as well as drawing cartoons. He adopted the “humor in line” concept of the American cartoonist Saul Steinberg, and contended that “graphic humor” was the universal narrative of caricature. The first exhibition of Seçuk’s work was held in 1951, and in 1952 he and his brother, journalist and writer, İlhan Selçuk began to publish the comic magazine 41Buçuk, the first publication of the 1950 Generation. In 1953 he published the comic magazine Karikatür, followed in 1954 by his first book, the Turhan Selçuk Caricature Album. The same year, he joined Milliyet as the newspaper`s main cartoonist. This was the time when his style of caricature began to settle into the geometric aesthetic which gained momentum in another comic magazine, which he and his brother published entitled Dolmuş. In 1957, he commenced drawing the adventures of his celebrated comic strip hero “Abdülcanbaz” in Milliyet newspaper. A selection of his latest works was published in 140 Karikatür in 1959, and in 1960 he became a contributor to the Italian comic magazine II Travaso. In 1961, he began to draw for the weekly political journal Yön, and over the decade published three albums: Turhan 62 (1962), Hiyeroglif (1964) and Hal ve Gidiş Sıfır (1969). He returned to Yeni İstanbul newspaper in 1969, transferring to Akşam newspaper the same year. In 1972, he began drawing weekly panoramic political caricatures for Cumhuriyet newspaper. In 1979, his encyclopedic album Söz Çizginin was published, and in 1980 he worked for Milliyet newspaper again. His 50th jubilee was celebrated by the thirteenth exhibition of his caricatures in 1992. The same year an exhibition of his work entitled “Human Rights” toured several major European cities (Strasbourg and Izmir, 1992: Nürnberg, Dortmund, Duisburg, Stuttgart, Mannheim and Munich, 1993; Leipzig Skopje and Nicosia, 1994: Frankfurt, 1995).
In 1955, Selçuk won the Association of Journalists Award, and in 1983, 1986, 1987, 1989 and 1990 was granted the Achievement Award by the same association. He received the Golden Palm and the Aero Club Silver Cup at the international Bordighera Caricature Festival in Italy in 1956; the Golden Date in 1962; the Ippocampo Award at the Ippocampo-Vasto Caricature Festival in Italy in 1970; the Artist of the People Award by the Union of Turkish Artists in 1971; and the Silver Cup at the Vercelli Caricature Biennial in Italy in 1975. His works can be seen in museums of caricature in the United States, Canada, Italy, Bulgaria, Switzerland and Poland. In 1992 and 1997, respectively he was awarded an honorary doctorate by Cumhuriyet University in Sivas and Anadolu University in Eskişehir. Turhan Selçuk passed away in 2010.