Istanbul’s landscape is changing rapidly due to the government’s efforts to meet demand for residential areas and to renovate the city with its former glory.
Miniaturist Nukhet Duru miniaturized part of Istanbul to transmit former days of the city to future.
Istanbul’s landscape is changing rapidly due to the government’s efforts to meet demand for residential areas and to renovate the city with its former glory. While some people photographed the city to transmit its former days to the future, some other miniaturizes it like Nukhet Duru.
Duru, who is deeply influenced by Matrakci Nasuh’s work (1480-1564) that altered practices of miniature of his time and had lasting effect on miniature, told AA correspondent that she miniaturized Altunizade, situated in the Asian part of the city, since, according to her, renovation brought destruction for some historical mansions and poorly rebuilding in the town. “I feel like I did a great job miniaturizing the town. It was like I shot a documentary.” She showed an effort to reach past photographs of mansions and buildings to miniaturize them according to its original format. After Altunizade, she continued miniaturizing Sile, a coastal town, since 2009. Now, her works are exhibited by a Turkish bank, and also are printed on the bank’s 2014 agenda.
She likened her effort like the one Matrakcı Nasuh did during his participation to Ottoman Sultan Suleiman I.’s various campaigns. “I admired his works. He miniaturized the city as he saw. He depicted cities and towns with his miniatures. Like him, I tried to depict buildings and towns.”
Matrakci Nasuh was an Ottoman mathematician, teacher, historian, sword master, and miniaturist. He invented the game “Matrak”, also wrote books on mathematics and geometry. Additionally, he is known as miniaturist because he created a different style that focuses on panoramic views of landscapes and cities painted with the greatest detail. For his great contribution, UNESCO added on its 2014 agenda to mark Matrakci Nasuh’s death in its 450th year.
Nukhet Duru began miniature craft after an Ottoman illumination. After spending 8 years on illumination, she said she realized that craft is not open to innovations and changed her direction to miniature. “That craft has opened me new frontiers. I have spent 20 years and keep working.” Nukhet Duru lamented there are not more than 3 people depicting cities with miniatures. She also said a piece of miniaturize requires 1.5 month to be completed, indicating that the craft is not a child work and demand a great patience.