'Free Prisoner' painting exhibition meets art lovers in Switzerland

An exhibition in St. Gallen shows paintings by Kurdish prisoners Aynur Epli, Ferhan Mordeniz and Mehmet Boğatekin, who were sentenced to life imprisonment in Turkey for political reasons.

The painting exhibition titled "Free Prisoner", organised by the Tigris-Euphrat association operating in Switzerland, brought together the works of three imprisoned artists in the prisons of the Turkish state with art lovers.

The exhibition in the Offene Kirche Hall in St. Gallen Canton will host its visitors until 27 May.

The exhibition includes paintings, oil paintings, cartoons, poems and writings produced by political prisoners Aynur Epli, Ferhan Mordeniz and Mehmet Boğatekin, who are held in various prisons in Turkey. In addition, lots will be cast for those who want to be pen pals with the prisoners in Turkey.

The exhibited works, produced in prisons with limited means, meet art lovers with the efforts of prisoners' families. Many visitors to the exhibition listened to the letter sent by Ferhan Mordeniz and read at the opening of the exhibition.

Mordeniz said in his letter: "I don't know how much the painter can express in words what the painting wants to say in its own language. All the paintings you see were created under conditions of imprisonment. For many years, I have been trying to make sense of my state of being and existence with lines through other works. In addition, I could not carry out holistic work because the endless disciplinary and solitary confinement penalties prevented me from attending the workshop. Undoubtedly, despite all the impossibilities, if you can feel a timbre in every picture you see, it means that our melody has formed itself and the labour has reached its goal."

Ferhan Mordeniz’s sister, Berçem Mordeniz, stated that the exhibition was organised to represent the freedom of all political prisoners in the person of Aynur Epli, Mehmet Boğatekin and Ferhan Mordeniz. She said, "Our aim is to be their voice. I would like to state that we support the prisoners' boycott of visits and communication. With the exhibition, we want to say no to isolation and torture."

A short music concert was performed at the exhibition.