Murat Urlali is a Turkish-born Australian artist whose art practice explores figuration and patterned abstraction, combining illusionistic representation with geometric compositional formats. He migrated to Australia in 2004, after a successful career in the television and film industry. Art, and especially painting had always figured in the background of his career and in 2011 Murat decided to take up the opportunity to study Fine Art at the National Art School, completing a Bachelor of Fine Art (Honours) in 2015 and a Master of Fine Art Research (Painting) in 2017.
His highly commended research was entitled ‘The Gender Politics of Kitsch and Camp in Contemporary Painting’ and captured his aim of creating a bridge connecting idealised Western imagery with spiritual symbolism of the Islamic world, while at the same time further unraveling the system on binary oppositions including high and low, art and craft, irony and sincerity as well as masculinity and femininity.
My practice explores both figuration and patterned abstraction and combines illusinistic representation with geometric compositional formats. The large and small scale figural and still life paintings include jewelled surfaces which bring into relationship Western and Eastern (Ottoman) painting and decorative techniques. Artistically, I draw heavily from the combination of ornamental and persuasive painting techniques of Baroque art. My figurative paintings show male, or at least male-oriented figures emerging from intricate patterned framing supports.
Taking inspiration from the tenebrism of Caravaggio, classically illusionistic figures appear within a kitsch surround to provide both visual richness and intrigue. And, by combining Eastern or Oriental patterns with Western perspectival representation, I aim to create a bridge connecting idealised Western imagery with spiritual symbolism from the Islamic world. I want also to further unravel the system of binary oppositions including high and low, art and craft, irony and sincerity as well as masculinity and femininity.
2020 ‘Murat’s Roma-perceptions, remembrances, places’, Culture at Work, Accelerator Gallery, Sydney, Australia 2020 ‘Misplaced and Dangling’, Artsite Galley, Sydney, Australia
2019 ‘Collector’s Choice’, Artsite Gallery, Sydney, Australia 2019 ‘Art 4 Peace’, Stacks Projects, Sydney, Australia 2018 ‘Collector’s Choice’, Artsite Gallery, Sydney, Australia
2018 ‘Sydney Contemporary’, Carriageworks, Sydney, Australia 2018 ‘BSR June Mostra’, British School at Rome, Rome, Italy 2018 ‘Untitled’, Traffic Jam Galleries, Sydney, Australia
2017 ‘Postgrad Show 2017’, NAS Gallery & Rayner Hoff Project Space, NAS, Sydney, Australia
2017 ‘Flores et Fructus’, Robin Gibson Gallery, Sydney, Australia
2017 ‘Nobody Passes’, Library Stairwell Gallery Show – NAS, Sydney, Australia 2016 ‘Wall to Wall’, Robin Gibson Gallery, Sydney, Australia
2016 ‘Corpus’, Stacks Projects, Sydney, Australia
2015 ‘Well Red’, Robin Gibson Gallery, Sydney, Australia
2015 ‘New Talent Exhibition’, Robin Gibson Gallery, Sydney, Australia 2014 ‘(small) GEMS’, Robin Gibson Gallery, Sydney, Australia
2014 St. George Bank National Art School Postgraduate Exhibition 2014 1/2 WAY – Library Stairwell Gallery Show – Honours Painting
2003 ‘Gelenekten Geleceğe Barış Sergisi’, Nazım Kültürevi, Istanbul, Turkey 2003 ‘The Atölye Group’ Istanbul Sevinç Altan Art Centre, Istanbul, Turkey
1998 Annual Show, Artists under the direction of Mehmet Güleryüz, Istanbul, Turkey
2021 Finalist Dobell Drawing Prize #22,Sydney, Australia
2018 British School at Rome, Scholar (Visual Arts), Rome, Italy
2017 Finalist (Traditional Category), Fisher’s Ghost Art Award, Sydney, Australia 2017 Finalist (Open Category), Fisher’s Ghost Art Award, Sydney, Australia 2014 Robin Gibson Gallery New Talent Exhibition Prize
2014 The Sydney Canvas Company Prize for an Honours Painter 2013 Parkers Sydney Fine Art Supplies Prize
2008 Finalist Gallipoli Art Prize, hosted by Gallipoli Memorial Club Ltd., Sydney, Australia.
2000 Highly Commended, Lloyd Rees Memorial Youth Art Award