5Q2 - Suzan Pektaş

Do you know the tales about the headless horse? No? Us neither. Suzan Pektaş might know more about it. In our format 5 questions to (5Q2), we talk to the artists of our Instagram takeovers about the work they show, their influences and upcoming plans.

In January 2021 we talked to Suzan Pektaş, a Bulgarian-Turkish photographer from Istanbul.


Suzan Pektaş is an Istanbul based independent photographer. She developed her passion for visual language during her college years and attended several training programs and workshops. She joined a documentary group in Istanbul in 2015 and chose documentary photography as one of her major fields. She explores various forms of visual expressions at the crossroad of visual arts and documentary. Mostly focusing on the identity of individuals in relation with their environments, Suzan’s current projects are primarily on women, urban transformation and immigration.


Fototreff: Did you encounter a special challenge while working on the project you’re showing?

Suzan Pektaş: I wanted to create my mythological childhood story in this project. But the region has undergone a demographic and cultural transformation. It was hard for me to find the places of my childhood, traces from my past. The whole coastline was crowded with high-rise buildings serving tourists, little was left of the woods of my childhood stretching into the sea. I had to dig deep to find the remnants of my Bulgaria, of my past.

Fototreff: Is there a photographer or artist who influenced you in a particular way?

Suzan Pektaş: Tarkovsky has been a great source of inspiration for me. His poetic language, which focuses on the existence and consciousness of the individual, has an undeniable effect on my exploration of the individual.

Fototreff: Which (photo-) book should everybody own (or you would like to have)?

Suzan Pektaş: Lately, I am very curious about “One Eyed Ulysses” by JM Ramirez-Suassi. I would love to have a copy. “I know how furiously your heart is beating” by Alec Soth is one of the recent books that I loved.

Fototreff: Can you recommend an exhibition we should go and see right away?

Suzan Pektaş: I would recommend Vasantha Yogananthan’s exhibition AMMA at The Photographers Gallery, London. I love his books as much as his work and would love to see the exhibition myself.

Fototreff: Have you started working on a new project? Any beans to spill?

Suzan Pektaş: Yes, there is a new photo research project about a mining town in Turkey which had its heydays more than a 100 years ago. It will be an inter-disciplinary work focusing on the relations and mutual interactions of society, individuals and environment. We will seek to uncover the traces of the past in today