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Biography

One of the prominent names in Contemporary Turkish Art, Mustafa Ayaz was born in 1938 in the village of Kabataş, district of Çaykara, at the province of Trabzon. His childhood which coincided with the crisis ridden years of the Second World War was spent struggling with poverty and the diseases. He first got the opportunity to go to school at the age of ten when he started to develop an interest in art. In 1953, he entered the Pulur Village Teacher’s School at the province of Erzurum. In the last year of the Secondary School he drew the attention of his teachers and was suggested that he should take the entrance examination to the Art Seminar of the Primary Teacher’s School at Çapa, Istanbul. He took the entrance examination and was successful. It was as early as then, when his course was determined. That course was to lead him to art. In 1959 he graduated from Çapa Primary Teacher’s School. After one year of teaching, he entered the Art Department of Gazi Teacher’s Training College and graduated in 1963. In the three years that followed, he taught art and headed the workshop at the Çorum Primary Teacher’s School. In 1966 he passed the examination for assistantship at the Art Department of Gazi Teacher’s Training College and taught art here until 1984 when he transferred to the Faculty of Fine Arts of the University of Hacettepe and retired in 1987. Having acquired the title of professorship in that same year he was appointed to the Faculty of Fine Arts of Bilkent University where, at the beginning of 1988 he resigned. Since then he has continued working in his own atelier. 

He has held over sixty exhibitions in Turkey and received nineteen awards. He participated in a multitude of biennials and joint exhibitions in India, Kuwait, Egypt, Romania, Bulgaria, Poland, Belgium, France, U.S. of America, England, Algeria and Germany. Over 400 of his works have found their way into collections abroad and close to 4000 are kept in domestic collections.