Yahia Turki

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Yahia Turki

Yahia Turki, (يحيى التركي‎), born Yahia Ben Mahmoud El Hajjem in 1903 in Istanbul, Turkey, died 1 March 1969, was a Tunisian painter described as the "father of Tunisian painting". After the Independence in 1956, Yahia became the president of l'Ecole de Tunis, which was created in 1947 by Pierre Boucherle in an attempt to gather Tunisian artists, regardless of their religious, racial, or artistic background, and with the common interest of establishing a Tunisian painting style. [1]

Biography

Born in Istanbul to a Turkish mother and a Djerbian father, Turki studied first at Sadiki College and later at the Lycée Carnot de Tunis. At the same time, he attended a Koranic school, where his interest was piqued, for the first time, by the arrangement of form and colour on writing tablets. He pursued his secondary school studies at the Lycée Alaoui, where he had as a drawing teacher Georges Le Mare, who discovered the talents of the young novice and where he applied himself to learning the basics of the discipline. Faced with family pressures, Turki abandoned his studies and joined the civil service.[2] He also received academic training at the Centre for art studies, which in 1930 became the Tunisian College of Fine Arts.[1]

Turki experienced his first success in 1923 in the Tunisian salon.[1] He later obtained a scholarship and went to Paris in 1927, where he kept company with Albert Marquet and Lucien Mainssieux.[1] In 1928, he stayed in France and took part in the Colonial Exhibition of French artists and the Salon des Indépendents.[1]

On his return to Tunis in 1935, he exhibited a series of works with Parisian themes.[1] A member of the "Group of Ten", in 1956 he succeeded Pierre Boucherle as the president of the Tunisian School, a post he occupied until his death.[1] He also became the vice-president of the Tunisian salon.[1]

At age 52, Turki married a Tunisian, and had a daughter named Nazly.[2]

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h (in French) Peintres de Tunisie de 1900 à 1960 (Harissa.com)
  2. ^ a b Aïcha Filali, Yahia, père de la peinture en Tunisie, coll. Peinture, éd. Cérès Productions, Tunis, 2002


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