Space Dancer, a new profession?
Photo: Courtesy of Ayse Oren
Turkish Ayse Oren is a nationally and internationally awarded designer. She has won the Michael Jackson “Live Forever Monument” design competition – Off the Wall - People’s Choice – World first prize.
A Member of the Board of the Chamber of Interior Architects of Turkey, she will give a scientific speech on Space Architecture at the 41st Edition of COSPAR Scientific Assembly in July 2016 in Istanbul. She was chosen as a Future Leader by the French Government.
Empower Women had the opportunity to ask Ayse a few questions:
As a child, did you ever dream about designing space constructions?
I believe that people know more about themselves and are more aware of who they are as a child, compared to what they know about themselves as a grown-ups. Maybe childhood is pure and free from any internal or external destruction. To me, cosmos was so magical and immense that I could not help but aspire to become an astronaut when I was a young girl. When in primary school, I had an all-girls gang focusing on environmental awareness, and I named it Rainbow Warriors. I was amazed by the secrets of nature and the totality of existence. I was questioning the pure existence even when I was a young girl.
How did you choose your profession?
I was very creative so I naturally decided to be an architect and graduated from the Fine Art and Architectural Faculty. However, I was also dancing at the Ankara Dance School and dreamt of being a dancer, and I kept on dancing even after my graduation. After school, I left Ankara and in 2010 I established my own company with the Techno-Initiative capital in Istanbul, focusing on architecture and design.
How do you combine art and science?
For me, science always explains why and how things work, and art plays with what it means, and both are crucial for life. At times, this border is too thin, and things are not proven to be true. However, I believe that what is important in life is to be bold enough to take risks and have enough courage to face failures. Otherwise, one always copies or replicates what have already been done successfully. I always question, I always dare to explore and I don’t stop creating. It is not a fantasy and dream for me to tap into my tech-savviness to create pieces of art. I seek a new kind of perception, approach, meaning and language across art, while questioning the meaning of technology and facilities with a universal perspective. This is how I decided to take part in the Technological Park and I became the first designer ever to have been accepted into Technological Park within Bosporus University. Having a technical team within a university helped me to grow to unforeseen horizons. I have been focusing on a very interesting project by utilizing technology. This kind of repurposing of technologies and infrastructure is a very significant strategy since it helps us understand what is behind the structure. It is breaking up the surface and looking inside.
How do you see the future of your profession?
I realize that the next chapter of architecture opens up towards energy-efficient Smart Cities as well as zero-energy houses. I also believe Space Age will be welcomed soon. I lately met the founder of Rick Tumlinson and CTO of NASA, David Miller. His words inspired me so much:
“The architects have been the most important people considering a journey to space” and offered a huge insight for me. I have been in touch with Rick, Founder of Deep Space Industries since then. He invited me to deliver a speech and presentation on Space Craft Architecture in Long Duration Space travels. I now focus on how to present technology and art in special areas with different designs: Space Craft and The Evolution of Architects as well as Innovation and Environmental Awareness for Smart Cities, Design and Culture.
Professor Alpay Er, Head of Industrial design department at Özyegin University in Istanbul, named me as “Space Dancer”, which I actually welcomed and like to use. We all can therefore conclude that I am now on my own way to follow higher layers for myself in the upcoming years as a Space Dancer Awards.