In 1987 Mustafa Pancar graduated from Painting Department of Mimar Sinan University where he studied under Adnan Çoker.

Pancar is a member of the Hafriyat group, who define themselves as 'urban travelers'. 'Excavation', a piece that gives its name to the group, emphasizes İstanbul’s deplorable reputation as a non-stop building site. In his most recent works, Mustafa Pancar’s compositions draw attention to different aspects of life in İstanbul: couriers speeding through traffic, TV soap opera sets oblivious to their surroundings, flower sellers beneath awnings in Taksim Square and city traffic unconsciously flowing beneath crossings and through slum areas. Pancar weaves the surfaces of his paintings with multiple compositions, with each segment telling a separate, episodic story. There is no single or clear composition on which to focus or which can be grasped with a single glance. Instead, Pancar brings together disjointed life-stories that lack any previous, shared history. This surfeit of visual information creates the impression of images plucked haphazardly from many different sources. It intercepts a viewer’s attempt to come up with a single, unifying meaning, forcing them instead to create their own individual narratives.


  • Title: Excavation
  • Creator: Mustafa Pancar
  • Date Created: 1995
  • Physical Dimensions: w194 x h141.5 cm
  • Original Title: Hafriyat
  • About Artist link: http://mustafapancar.com/
  • Type: Painting
  • Rights: Dr. Nejat F. Eczacıbaşı Foundation Collection / Long Term Loan, İstanbul Museum of Modern Art
  • External Link: http://www.istanbulmodern.org/
  • Medium: Oil on canvas

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