Ankara’s public Gazi University, in collaboration with the Embassy of Azerbaijan, has announced the launch of a poster competition that encourages participants to design artworks on the theme, “Everyone Sleeping: Armenian Persecutions from Anatolia to the Caucasus, International Poster Competition,” the Armenian Weekly reports.
The winner(s) will be announced on January 19, the anniversary of the assassination of Hrant Dink, the Turkish-Armenian journalist and editor of Agos who was murdered by an ultra-nationalist Turkish youth in Istanbul in 2007.
In introducing the competition, a lengthy, fictionalized account of Turkish history is provided—an account in which Armenians committed genocide against Turks and Azerbaijanis. Under the rule of Seljuk Turks, and later the Ottoman Empire, Armenians lived in peace, which brought about the “Golden Age” of the Armenians. Armenians were offered religious and other freedoms, human rights, and a general attitude of benevolence. This all changed when Armenians, instigated by Western powers, began to rebel and ceased to be the once “loyal nation.”
Painting a treacherous portrayal of Armenians, the organizers go on to describe how Armenians tried to “dismantle” the country, supported by Russian, British, and French forces. In order to “prevent damage,” an effort to relocate them came about. “The aim was not to destroy the Armenians; the purpose was to protect them and to ensure the security of the state,” the competition organizers claim, though conceding that some deaths did occur—around 50,000 (the 1.5 million number is a gross exaggeration they claim). Muslims, on the other hand, were killed in greater numbers—around two million. As to the matter of genocide, the true victims of WWI were the Turks, they say. It was the Turks who suffered genocide—around one million Turks were killed at the hands of Armenian gangs—in Van, Mush, Bitlis and elsewhere.
The organizers “remind” potential participants of the “Unimaginable tortures and rapes,” the suicides of women hoping to preserve their chastity, the slaughters of young and old alike at the hands of the Armenians, as well as the mass graves, and the massacres at the hands of “Dashnag gangs.” Armenians are portrayed as conduits of “savagery, cruelty, torture, rape…”
Despite “these painful events of the Turkish nation,” Mustafa Kemal Ataturk (who also happened to establish Gazi University) founded modern Turkey, which managed to survive despite “Armenian terrorism.”
But apparently Armenian crimes do not end here. The organizers evoke the Karabagh war, where they claim yet another genocide took place in 1992, that of Azerbaijanis in Khojaly.
“The Turkish world suffered genocide… silence continues… Everyone is asleep… and while everyone was asleep, the Turks were massacred again. Everyone is asleep despite the historical facts that are attacked by the narrative of Armenians and their supporters and the so-called genocide allegations,” write the organizers. Furthermore, the Armenian allegations amount to “slander,” “injustice,” and “defamation.”
The organizers invite international artists and designers who care for human rights and want the world to wake up to the genocide and massacres committed by Armenians, to participate in this poster competition.
The winner(s) will be announced on Jan. 19, 2015.
Exhibition of submitted works will take place at the Gazi University Museum of Painting and Sculpture beginning on Feb. 26, 2015. The grand prize is an exhibition of the winning work in Baku.
Organizers include: Ambassador of Azerbaijan to Ankara Faig Bagirov; Flame Çakmakoglu (Gazi University); Fulya Bayraktar (Gazi University); Şansal Evans (Gazi University); Bulent Salderay (Gazi University); and Ali Herisc (Gazi University).
Jury members include: Arif Aziz, dean of the State University of Fine Arts and Civilization (Azerbaijan); Uğurcan Akyuz, Near East University, dean of the Faculty of Fine Arts and Design (Northern Cyprus); Mehmet Basbug, the Kyrgyzstan-Turkey Manas University, dean of the Faculty of Fine Arts (Kyrgyzstan); Seifolla Bodikov, Buketov Karaganda State University dean (Kazakhstan); Rustam Khudayberganov, Behzo Drafting and Design University (Uzbekistan); Sabit Magavin, Buketov Karaganda State University (Kazakhstan); Sevil Suleymanova, State Art Academy dean (Azerbaijan); Adnan Tepecik, dean of Faculty of Fine Arts, Design and Architecture (Turkey); Yeralin Kuandyk, Ahmet Yesevi University (Kazakhstan); Alisher Alikulov, Kamolitdin Behzoda Ressamlik ve Tasarim University dean (Uzbekistan); Cigdem Demir, Gazi University, Faculty of Fine Arts in Visual Communication Design Department (Turkey); and Suiutbek Torobekov, dean of the National Art Academy (Kyrgyzstan).
The Exhibition organizing committee includes: Naile Çevik, Umut Demirel, Ramazan Can, and Giray Selcuk.
The graphic design board includes: Dilek Oguzoglu, Yilmaz Ciracioglu, and Zeynep Pehlivan.