14. марта 2024

Ana Miljković

University of Arts in Belgrade, Faculty of Fine Arts

Erasmus+ Mobility for Studies at:

Mimar Sinan Fine Art University in Istanbul, Turkey

I am grateful that I had the opportunity and the privilege to spend four wonderful months on mobility at the Mimar Sinan Fine Art University in Istanbul, Türkiye. It was an experience full of beautiful moments which I am to remember for the rest of my life. I have only all the best to say about the staff, professors and fellow students at the university because they have been nothing but warm and welcoming, helping me and other exchange students every step of the way, to get used to a new environment at the school and in the city.

In the painting studio, which operates similarly to our studios in Belgrade, and where I was welcomed as if I was a part of it from the very beginning, I was able to work and develop under the guidance of professor Mahmut Bozkurt and assistant Begüm Mütevellioğlu from whom I’ve learned so much during the four months spent there. I also had the opportunity to learn the art of carpet weaving in the University’s tapestry studio, led by Professor Gülçin Aksoy. In this studio, filled mostly with Erasmus students, which was like a gateway for all of us, we were creative, learning, spending time talking and eating good food. In this studio, where we spent so much time, we grew into very close friends who shared both hard and happy times. Besides the time spent in the studios, I will remember spending time with friends, drinking tea and looking at the Bosphorus from the campus wharf.

Being fortunate enough to have a friend already living in Istanbul at the time of my arrival I had the privilege of getting to know the city through the eyes of a local but also exploring it like a child with the other Erasmus students, all together immersed in a new culture in a city that has so much to offer, if you just open your eyes and look around you. I spent almost all of my mobility in Istanbul, and even though I have seen a lot of historical sites, as well as the local life, exploring the city’s farthest parts, I still feel like I have only seen a tiny glimpse of this magical city. Besides Istanbul, I’ve managed to visit some other cities in southeast Türkiye like Mardin and Diyarbakır where we met a writer who transformed his house into a museum filled with many different antique items, who invited us to stay for breakfast and shared with us his stories and genuine laughs. From there we took a twenty-two-hour train to Ankara where because of some unfortunate circumstances we spent time only in the train station waiting for the train to Istanbul. Even this time spent at the train station stays with me as a happy memory. Through this trip, I’ve seen Türkiye as a country full of warm people, as well as a country of beautiful nature and landscapes.

Through this experience, I’ve gained so much. I have developed as an artist but also as a person. I met people who have changed me as well as people whose pieces I will carry with me for the rest of my life. I’ve met friends from all over the world and learned about new cultures. I have experienced things that I would never have been able to have not there been this mobility and for that I am so grateful. Istanbul, the city that I’m sure to return to, as well as the school and Studio 4 which I’ve become a part of thanks to the wonderful studio mates and the professor, is now like a second home to me, a place that I will be welcomed to with open arms whenever I come back again.


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