Interview with Ilke Cop
Works exhibited by TATJANA PIETERS
Do you think that artists nowadays are connected to the city they live in? You are based in Brussels; how do you integrate your activity as an artist into the environment around you?
Ilke Cop: Brussels lives in me as much as I live in it. My practice has a lot of diverse influences and is characteristic for the bustling multi-cultural reality that is Europe’s capital.
Art, besides being a representation of a subject, is a statement beyond all social, political and cultural barriers. Can art manage to have a social responsibility towards the surrounding reality? Are you able to address this responsibility in your work?
IC: My activism and intersectional feminism is palpable in my practice. I use my self-image to question and investigate my own privileges as a white woman, but I also approach the world of art with a collaborative mind, trying to build a strong community and uplift disenfranchised artists.
How important is the past for imagining the future?
IC: In my recent work I am trying to create a space that envisions a world after the apocalypse. In times of crisis, the past offers some kind of guidance, but it has been problematic how this past has been interpreted and recorded. Maybe that's why I make art, as a way to reach out to a past in which everything is still possible through the creation of my own universe.
Why did you decide to pursue an artist career?
IC: Art has always held the most holy position for me. It makes it possible to put ideas into the world without any restrictions.
Which would you choose as the most iconic work of your production to represent yourself?
IC: “Bright & Early IV”, it is my most recent painting and it is an expression of the thoughts and visions I have for my practice and my own place in the world.
Interview by Emanuela Mazzonis