Zeki KOCAMEMİ

Born in İstanbul in 1900, Zeki Kocamemi signed up to Sanayi-i Nefise Mektebi (Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University) in 1916. With his friends, he exceeded the concept of art of his instructors at school, and took part in the establishment of Yeni Resim Cemiyeti (New Arts Society) which aimed to create new approaches. He went to Munich with a scholarship he reeceived from Türk Ocağı in 1922, and started taking painting courses from Hans Hofmann in his private workshop. He was appointed to Trabzon High School as a painting teacher in 1928, and stayed there for about a year and was the teacher of Bedri Rahmi Eyüboğlu. Kocamemi left his job about a year later, and took part in the establishment of Private Artists and Sculptors Association. The association opened their first exhibition in Ankara Ethnography Museum in 1929, and Kocamemi contributed with six paintings to this exhibition. He also got involved with furniture at this period. He was appointed to the Academy of Fine Arts, the Department of Interior Architecture, as an assistant of Prof. Günther in 1930. In 1933, he was promoted to lecturer on Architecture and Furniture in this department. Kocamemi adopted Cubism in his style, and reflected this concept to his furniture design. He founded the Zeki Kocamemi Workshop in the Academy in 1936, and continued to be a lecturer here. “He is a smart, first class master of furniture.” says Ahmet Hamdi Tanrıpınar in his article related to Zeki Kocamemi, in Cumhuriyet Newspaper.