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by Sinejan Kiliç Buchina

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Artist’s Statement

Kılıç Buchina’s work focuses on issues of territories, borders, and displacement. Her interests lie predominantly in transnational identities, the unpacking and questioning of historical narratives, and concepts of belonging. Her works are attempts to address the political and physical aspects of representation, and relate closely to her personal history.

As an Abkhazian minority from Turkey, and an immigrant to the USA, her practice reflects and questions the location, both geographical and conceptual, of the boundaries that shape and define identity. How can a country or nation be both a place that exists in a physical sense but be politically invisible? How does one define belonging to a country that does not have a postal system or currency, but a language, deep oral history, a distinct culture, as well as folk religions and other indigenous faiths? What are the parameters of border assignment and recognition, and what are the implications of constructing nations based on linguistic, religious and political affiliations?

In her practice, the artist creates work in which she recontructs the borders of unrecognized countries along their ‘non-existing’ lines, re-evaluating rather than referencing maps of ‘de facto’ states’ real borders. Using the “approved” perimeters imposed by nations engaged in proxy struggles, Buchina chronicles her own creation of territories based on the details of their own exclusion.

In creating her work, Buchina uses unconventional materials; animal hair, spices, tea, organic and synthetic pigments, rusted metal, flowers and plants, bonding agents and more, while also incorporating traditional materials such as acrylic and oil paint, ink, pastel and graphite. She collects found materials from her surroundings as well as her travels, and creates rust and other forms of decomposition to form surfaces and texture in her imagery, which is initially familiar but rendered unrecognizable by processes both manufactured and natural, in this sense mimicking the fabricated and evolutionary nature of our boundaries.

Sinejan Kiliç Buchina

About Sinejan Kiliç Buchina

Sinejan Kiliç Buchina is an artist and arts educator, working in New York. She holds an MA from City University in New York (2019), a BFA from Marmara University in Turkey (2007). Buchina has exhibited work internationally in: Synesthesia Gallery, NY, (2020). Walter Meade Gallery, NY (2020), Amos Eno Gallery, NY (2019), The Every Women Biennial, NY (2017), When Black Swallows Red at the La Mama La Galleria, NY (2018), Arts Depot, London, United Kingdom (2019), Brighthill New York, NY (2017), Tattoo Circus, London, United Kingdom (2019).

She is a recipient of several awards, including the Connor Travel Fellowship, granted to present her academic paper in International Conference at the Madrid Carlos iii University; the Space & Time Award for excellence in painting; a P.E.O Education Grant; as well as President’s Fund for Excellence scholarship. She has also participated in the following residencies: Critical Feedback Program Trestle Art Space, Brooklyn, New York (2019), Twin Oaks Residency, Treadwell, New York (2018), Node Center for Curatorial Studies, Berlin, Germany (2012).

Cold Mountain Review is published once a year in the Department of English at Appalachian State University. Support from Appalachian’s Office of Academic Affairs and College of Arts and Sciences enables CMR’s learning and publications program. The views and opinions expressed in CMR do not necessarily reflect those of university trustees, administration, faculty, students, or staff.