Young Guns 18: Eylul Duranagac
By Alixandra Rutnik and Brett McKenzie on Nov 18, 2020
Highlighting the creative superstars that make up the class of Young Guns 18
2020 has been one rollercoaster of a year, but fortunately, the spirit of creativity can't be dampened. Want proof? Check out the winners of Young Guns 18!
Beginning with our largest and most diverse jury in history, acclaimed creatives from across the globe spent three months reviewing hundreds of submissions from insanely talented young professionals seeking validation for all of their hard work. After narrowing down the field to 83 top-notch finalists, the jury engaged in virtual discussion and debate, deciding who will win one of the most career-impacting honors in our industry.
In the end, we are honored to present the 31 incredible winners of Young Guns 18, a diverse collection of artists, filmmakers, animators, designers, illustrators, and others, all of them representing some of the very best that their fields have to offer.
We invite you to learn about all 31 Young Guns 18 winners in this series of interviews.
CREATIVE DIRECTOR/NEW MEDIA ARTIST
When did Young Guns first pop up on your radar?
We received an ADC award as a studio before, so I heard about Young Guns from that. A Young Guns award is a validation of success.
Congrats on winning Young Guns on your second attempt! What did you do this time that was different than last time?
I chose to enter my large scale and public art projects. I uploaded completely new projects that I haven't entered into Young Guns before. I always love a challenge. Art and science projects tend to push the boundaries and allow for a new way of thinking– this makes these projects unique.
Young Guns is as much an exercise in self-curation as it is in sheer creative talent. After all, you are only allowed to submit six projects. How did you go about deciding which pieces to submit and which to leave out?
It wasn't hard for me to choose. I chose professional pieces that related to other large scale global art and science projects with comprehensive R&D.
What went through your mind when you discovered that you won, knowing how difficult it is to make it into Young Guns?
I was very surprised because the projects I submitted don't usually go over well with the jury. I could have written pages on the academic projects I submitted, but I had to summarize them briefly due to the word limit. I couldn't fully explain the projects, so when I heard that I won I was incredibly happy. Winning Young Guns motivated me a lot during the pandemic.
If you had to pick one of the six projects that you entered as your favorite, which one would it be and why?
It's hard to choose one, but I would say Poetic Ai is my favorite. Our project Poetic Ai is not only an immersive experience, but also it can be read as a book and touched as a physical sculpture. It is made by 20 million Ai lines and theories. I love to turn unseen data into art that can be seen by people.
If you had to describe your creative style, the part of your work that’s most distinctively “you”, what would it be?
I would describe my style as dark and disturbing. I like to evolve one point and transform it to another dimension. There is always something about my sign in my work and my personal projects.
Who are some of the biggest influences on your work and career, people who may have had a hand in mentoring and supporting you?
I was obssessed with light physics when I was a kid and I found myself creating light installations. In short, my inspration comes from inventors and physicists like Christiaan Huygens and Galileo. Nowadays, I like James Turrell and Olafur Ellison’s works.
It goes without saying that 2020 has been a pretty crazy year, with a global pandemic and social upheaval shaping so many facets of our lives. Aside from the positive news of winning Young Guns, how has this year been for you?
I quickly adapted to the new reality in all aspects. As a creative mind, I love the way art and technology moves humanity forward. During these crazy days, art more than ever proved to be the light of hope for all of us. Our studio projects have continued during the pandemic. We have learned different languages from taking online courses and we are devoloping new technologies to apply to our public arts.
Name a creative/professional dream that you have yet to fulfill — hey, maybe Young Guns can help propel you in that direction!
I would like to do a new billboard project for Times Square in NYC.
Any last words about winning Young Guns 18 that you'd like to share?
I would like to thank all the Young Guns jury members. No matter what the outcome may be keep moving forward! Sometimes you win and sometimes you learn. This makes us improve in every way.
WORDS FROM THE JURY
"Eylul Duranagac’s work is mesmerising. Driven by concepts from the worlds of science, astrophysics and the natural world, it's the perfect fusion between digital and human. Her creations are huge, immersive environments that feel both alien and familiar at the same time. I hope I can experience them in real life one day!"
Artist & Designer
Young Guns 13 Winner
"Eylul Duranagac’s work is amazing, very refined and upscale. I think we’re seeing only the beginning of her vision, and I'm looking forward to see her future projects."
Fashion Stylist & Consultant
"Duranagac has put forth a compelling body of work for this award. She's managed to take digital art and make it tangible, to bring it into the real world. These visual experiences produce an ineffable quality that must be exponentially more impressive in the flesh. A highly deserving recipient."
"As someone who is fascinated by metaphysics, Eylul's work speaks to me on a fundamental level. This is the perfect kind of art for me: experiencing a kind of idea based on real-world theories and concepts that would never have occurred to you on your own, expanding your consciousness one project at a time."
Photographer, Director + Illustrator
Young Guns 9 Winner
Make sure to check out all the Young Guns 18 Winners in the archive!